We all face challenges in life and go through painful experiences that are not easy to forget. These painful experiences could be failures, trauma, or the death of a loved one. People say, “Let go of the past!”. But this idea is very flawed and rarely helps us in the long run.
Our past is a major piece of the puzzle of who we are now, which is why you must not let go of your past!
Let’s find out why people tend to suppress their past, why it is unhealthy, and how to heal your past for a successful life and future.
Why Do We Ignore Our Past?
When people face any traumatic event that is hard to cope with, they sometimes deal with it by pushing it away, suppressing it, and eventually removing it from their consciousness with time.
However, no matter how much you try not to think about your trauma, it leaves a permanent scar. Every time you look at the scar or revisit it, you re-experience the pain with the same intensity.
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Letting go of the past is a snoozing technique that doesn’t offer a real fix. It only gives us experience
- Sleeping issues
- Memory issues
- Distressing emotions like guilt, irritability, fear, anger, and shame
- Isolation or detachment
- Dissociation or depersonalization
- Inability to seek support
So, what should I do instead?
How To Deal with The Past in a Healthy Way?
Acknowledging and dealing constructively with the past is deeply cathartic. You need to consciously reopen your old wounds, deal with your past traumas, seek help, and close them again so the scar becomes nothing but a positive memory for you.
Follow the below exercise with 3 simple steps to heal your past and move on more effectively:
- Sit With Your Trauma
Don’t bottle up your emotions associated with the past. Most often, we distract ourselves and try to avoid our emotions by engaging in unhealthy activities such as drinking, drugs, procrastination, binging, etc.
What you really need to do is feel back your emotions, process them, and accept them in a more acknowledging manner.
To do this, sit in a quiet place and rethink your trauma. Let the emotions flow freely, and allow yourself to sit with them for a while.
If you feel sad, cry; if you feel angry, scream, but allow your mind and heart to express yourself.
- Accept Your Emotions & Acknowledge the Lessons
Once you feel all the emotions, you now need to accept that something happened in your life, but it has passed.
While the traumatic memories associated with such events create a lifetime scar, they also make us stronger and help us learn many useful lessons. You need to acknowledge the lessons you learned from the event and CHOOSE to live better because of your past.
Pinpoint what new knowledge you experienced because of your past challenge and in what ways it made you stronger.
Forgive people who were involved in your misery. Don’t allow your past to control you; take yourself out of the victim mentality.
- Change The Theme, Take Action
Once you have dissected your past, look at the hidden themes in it and give a new positive theme to your life story.
It could be the theme of confidence, inner strength, discovering who you are, sacrifice, etc.
Reconstruct your life story by seeing what worked, what failed, and what’s the right formula for you to succeed.
Now is the time for you to take relentless action. Think about in which role, in which industry, and in which sector of your life you can apply the knowledge learned.
Lastly, don’t shy away from getting the empowerment and guidance you need from other people to succeed.
We may try our best to live in the present moment or future plan, but if we have not healed our past, we will always remain in an unhealthy loop.
If your past negatively dictates your Present, it will negatively dictate your Future.
So, break the shackles of the past and heal them to uncover the secrets of the future.
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