Every one of us has a story of the past, probably not just one but several. Some bring us joy and others bring us deep pain, resentment and regret. On my journey to discover Self, I have come to realize that my past does not define me. It has instead taught me many lessons, some that I have learnt in easy ways, others I have learnt the hard way. Regardless, the past has passed, it is behind us. I once watched a video by Jason Silva, a television personality , film maker and public speaker. I loved the way he talked about the past. Often times, we look at the past as something that has happened that cannot be changed. However, Silva had a beautiful perceptive that he shared on how we can actually change the past. He explains that we can do so by changing the way we look at the past. So often, we continue to bring up stories from the past and with that, we relive it over and over again. Depending on what story is from the past that we are bringing up, we begin to experience it all over again. Memories of a vacation or childhood memory that was so fun, so loving, and so joyful will bring up those very feelings again. We will smile, laugh, share, and rejoice. Those types of memories make us feel so wonderful when we are retelling and rethinking them. But what about the memories that are painful, those that hurt, disappoint, make us angry, make us resentful? Those too are real and those too become experienced again when those stories are told. Take a moment and think about a situation that comes up for you right now? Is it a memory that brings you joy or deep sadness? Do you enjoy reliving that past experience? Do you feel elated and happy telling the story? Does it make you feel angry and resentful? What does that look like and feel like in your body? Does it push you to react in a certain way?
On my own journey, I have noticed when and how stories I share stories. I mindfully become aware of what triggers certain memories of the past and I allow myself to become aware of what goes on in my inner world when these memories start coming up or when I become engaged in the story telling. I become aware of the stories I retell – I am aware of how they make me feel in my present moment – whether joyful emotions come up or even those that cause my pain. It is important to allow ourselves to notice these experiences as they arise, but there comes a time when we can realize that healing can also be experienced if we so allow it to occur in our lives. Allowing ourselves to be open to the possibility of shifting in a way so as to change our past by means of changing our perspective about it has brought me a deep sense peace. I have by no means perfected it all, and by no means am I looking for the perfect ending. However, I do realize that the place that I am and the experiences I face in every moment are exactly right for me. I learn everyday and I grow a little more. Everyday I strive to take another step forward and show up a little brighter on my journey.
It is my sincere hope and prayer for all of you to find peace from the past, peace in the present and peace on your journey ahead. Many blessings xx.