Your past does not define you

Do you often re-visist your unpleasant past experiences, and every time you do so, you feel like as if you were re-living them? Is thinking about these experiences draining you? Do you feel uneasy when someone brings up certain past memories (I’m not talking about the great memories, but the ones that make you cringe)? Do you feel uncomfortable just by remembering something you’ve said to someone or they’ve said to you? Do you feel ashamed of some things you’ve done in the past?

If so, this week’s post is for you.

A few days ago I shared with my community a short video, where I talked about honouring our personal and spiritual growth. In this video I touched on the topic of past.

So many people are being so hard on themselves, because of their past mistakes and for some of the unwise choices they’ve made. And many, can still feel very uncomfortable every time they remember them. They feel like, they are still paying for their mistakes.

Over the years I’ve written quite a few articles about letting go of past, about forgiveness (forgiving yourself and others). I created meditations and taught classes dedicated to this topic. The more and more research I do on the topic of past, in general, the more I notice how difficult it is for us, humans, to actually stop our daily time-travelling back to this place. Our past plays a huge role in our lives. However, we don’t have to let the old, painful stories from our past stop us from moving forward.

How can I move forward in life, when I have so many old stories continuously on a repeat?

By honouring your personal and spiritual growth.

This means making peace with your past. In other words, beginning to look at your past from an observer’s perspective, rather than being an active participant and re-living your past experiences over and over again. And I know this can sound easier said than done, but: ‘Would you rather be a prisoner of your past or would you prefer to rise above these painful stories and look at them as valuable lessons?’ I’m sure you’d choose the latter.

Remember:

‘Your past is not a place of residence, but a place of reference.’ 

The truth is, you will always think of the past and the experiences you’ve been through. That’s a fact of life. However, by honouring your personal and spiritual growth, you are not directing so much energy back to the past itself, but you are rather trying to understand the past choices you’ve made. These choices do not define you, no matter what they are. They are merely the experiences you’ve been through and are part of your journey. You’ve gone through these experiences and they’ve taught you something. You’ve learned some important lessons from them.

If you’ve done something  you are definitely not proud of, remind yourself, that if you knew better, you would’ve done better. If somebody did you wrong, and you are still feeling resentful and uneasy when you remember it, forgive yourself for having that thought. Remind yourself that you are not there anymore. You are right here in this moment. What happened is now only a memory. It’s no longer here. Your power lies in the present moment. Don’t give it to the past.

You might have been through a lot and I want to acknowledge you and honour you for that. Looking back and noticing where you are now just shows how strong and resilient you are. What you’ve been through is not you, it’s just the experiences you’ve been through.

I also want to acknowledge those of you who might have been through a very traumatic past experiences. I can understand that it may not be so easy to look at your situation from the above’s perspective. There is much deeper work that needs to be done. To those of you, I strongly recommend seeking a health care professional or a therapist who can offer you guidance and support. These amazing people are only a phone call or email away. Never hesitate making an appointment with them. They are there to help.

Stay strong and keep well, 

Jana x 

Honouring your personal & spiritual growth video: