Table of Contents
Holding on to the past effects the way we handle situations in the future. The only way to truly embrace the future and make the most of it is to let go of the past. Acceptance is the primary step in letting go of the past.
Many of us have skeletons in our closets, things that have happened in our pasts that may continue to haunt us. Some of us hold on to these experiences and memories, even if replaying them in our minds continues to hurt us. Maybe we feel as though the past is a part of us and we can’t escape it, or maybe we identify our current selves with past actions and experiences.
Either way, holding on to the past effects the way we handle situations in the future. The only way to truly embrace the future and make the most of it is to let go of the past. Sure it sounds simple, but is it?
AcceptanceWhile we want to let go of the past, it is important to also accept it. Acceptance is the primary step in letting go of the past and beginning to embrace the future. We need to accept our past history and the people who shaped it. Accepting that the past happened but it does not define who you are is the first step in setting yourself free and becoming ready for whatever the future holds.
Read more: Dealing With Depression Without Drugs
Feeling ItMany of us with past hurt tend to stifle those feelings and hold them in. While the past does not define your future, it is important to feel the feelings. Shoving your feelings down leads to pent up stress, which can be detrimental to your mental and physical well-being. If you don’t let the emotions out, they will come out in some way and affect those around you, even if they are not the source of your anger and hurt. Crying it out can rid your body of damaging substances that build up in the body along with all that stifled emotion. In order to let go of your anger or hurt you need to feel the emotion to the fullest.
UnderstandingOnce you’ve had time to feel those feeling, it is then time to understand your past history. Try to look at the events that occurred in your life with a different perspective, as if you are on the outside looking in. Try to only examine the events that have happened and not to be judgmental of them. It is important to recognize that you are not your past; repetitive patterns, difficult situations and certain people shaped your life experiences but they do not need to shape the person that you are today. Truly understanding your past can help you to break old cycles and patterns.
Letting GoOnce you have accepted and understood your past, it is time to begin letting go. Dumping all of the old junk that has no real value can help you let go of your baggage. Release all of the old ideals and judgments, and start with a clean slate. Clear your expectations of who you thought you should be and instead let it all go. Holding on to the past holds you back from embracing the future. Let it go and your life’s purpose will become clearer.
FlexibilityWhile flexibility may seem to contradict alignment, it does not mean that you have to let go of your goals. Just be prepared for bumps in the road, be open to opportunities and be flexible to whatever life throws your way. If you feel dissatisfied with your current situation or things are not seeming to go your way, channel those feelings and do something positive right away.
Read more: Dealing With Abuse Memories
Pay It ForwardIf you find yourself dwelling on the past, angry with the present or worrying about the future, take a minute to brighten someone else’s day. Hold the door for someone, smile at a passersby, donate to a charity, or volunteer at your local soup kitchen; simple actions such as these can refocus your energy and put your situation into perspective and have a lasting impression on you.
Believe In YourselfBelieving in yourself is a great way to keep focus on the present and embrace your future. Trust your beliefs and values, and believe that you can accomplish the goals you’ve set for yourself. If you can visualize it, you can achieve it. It’s normal to have a bad day or a moment of weakness, just remember to never give up on yourself. Always believe in your purpose and the possibilities will become endless.
Shift Your ThoughtsIf you find yourself brooding about the day’s stresses, shift your thoughts. Think of something pleasant or enjoyable and shake off the stress. Immerse yourself in a fun activity or go out with a group if you find yourself worrying unnecessarily about things.
MeditationIf you find yourself dwelling on the past or worrying about the future, bring yourself into the present with some mediation. Often, our lives are going non-stop and can be filled with distractions that can cause us to lose focus on what’s important and cloud our thinking. Meditation, even if done seldom, can bring us clarity and a fresh perspective.
Look to The FutureVisualize yourself as being empowered and capable of anything. Try to imagine your life in 10 years or even 20 years, when you imagine what your life could be. Sweating the small things really serves no purpose in the big picture. When you find yourself getting over-emotional, try to substitute those emotion-fueled thoughts with facts. Keeping things in perspective can help you to embrace the future.
Letting go of the past can be difficult. No matter what experiences you’ve had or what anger and hurt you may be holding on to, it is possible to let it all go and embrace the future. Each and every day we have a new opportunity to let go of old ideals, beliefs, past relationships, negative patterns and expectations. If you open yourself up to the idea of creating a new future for yourself and remain in the moment, you will see that embracing the future and letting go of the past is entirely possible.
Continue reading after recommendations