How To Let Go Of The Past
Do you ever feel that you are stuck in the past and can’t seem to let it go.
It’s like you are carrying a heavy burden that keeps you stuck.
It sounds so simple to just let it go, but sometimes it can feel so hard.
You can’t stop holding to a grudge or a betrayal.
Every time you want to move on, it comes back to haunt you.
This is called rumination.
The word “ruminate” derives from the Latin for chewing cud, a less than gentile process in which cows grind up, swallow, then regurgitate and rechew their feed.
We do the same thing with our thoughts, when we play the same thoughts over and over in our mind.
Rumination is a curious habit.
It’s like binge-watching bad movies on Netflix.
That’s what happens when we can let go of the past.
We make sad stories play nonstop. The more we watch our life’s movie, the more it hurts.
How to Let Go
We know we need to let go of the past.
We need to stop replaying those thoughts over and over again in our heads.
But how do we do it?
Most people will eventually come to grips with why they should do it.
Where they get stuck, is on actually taking steps to make it happen.
So, I have some ideas that might help you.
Stop trying to be the hero of your story
We’ve all been hurt.
It’s sad and embarrassing — no-one wants to look weak.
That’s why we construct our idealized version of the past.
And we sometimes blame others instead of taking ownership for what happened.
Everything in life has a beginning and an ending.
You don’t need to continue rehashing your past to keep it alive.
Make peace with the end, especially if it was ugly, and move on.
Don’t let others define who you are
Blaming others when things go wrong makes us lose control.
We are letting them define the terms of how we live.
We have no control whatsoever over what other people do, but we can control on how we react.
When you focus on what people did to you, it’s really just a distraction.
Take control of your own actions and what you can manage, and choose to live life on your own terms, not according to what someone else thinks.
Give yourself permission to let go of the past.
That is an important step.
Your brain can latch onto something and is waiting for you to release the responsibility.
By committing to this release, your brain can focus on other productive areas.
That release comes in the form of telling yourself to let go.
Learn from your past experiences.
There are learning nuggets contained within your past.
Anything you have done or tried before is up for grabs in the University of your past.
When something goes wrong, we tend to blame ourselves, too.
We have a hard time accepting that we make mistakes and let our perfectionist mindset take over.
Did you make a mistake? Fine, we all do.
Learn to forgive yourself.
Errors can be corrected. Mistakes are not a final destination but a stop that prepares us for the journey.
We must learn from them and continue moving forward.
It’s up to you to recognize what those lessons are and how to use them effectively.
The way to use them is to determine why they happened and how to avoid them in the future.
Consider learning meditation.
When you are relaxed, you will have an easier time of purging your past.
One of the best forms of relaxation is meditation.
Don’t expect fast solutions with this.
It takes several sessions to get your body and mind in tune with the techniques.
The key is to keep doing it until you feel the effects.
Don’t hide from your past.
People try to pretend certain aspects of their past did not happen, especially the more embarrassing moments.
Sometimes when we get so stuck in a problem, it becomes hard to separate the event from who we are.
Maybe you’ve stuffed your thoughts deep down but haven’t actually dealt with them.
This can cause your past to come back to you with a vengeance.
Remember, your stories shape you but don’t define your identity.
Don’t let a bitter experience become who you are.
Acknowledge everything about your past but commit to pushing forward.
Letting go of a past story makes space for new ones.
Focus on the here and now and become at peace with yourself.
Most people can’t let go of the past because they don’t appreciate their present.
To let go of the past, we need to stop thinking of how things should be and accept them for what they are.
Letting go of the past doesn’t mean that things weren’t good while they lasted.
It’s about remembering the good moments and not allowing an unhappy ending cloud the whole experience.
Want to let go of the past?
Start by living in the moment and appreciating what you have here and now.
Don’t expect all changes to occur immediately.
Your past habits may be difficult to break. It took a long time to develop those bad habits.
If you are too hard on yourself about your past, stop.
It’s okay to acknowledge that you made some mistakes but don’t get overly critical of them.
Concentrate on the good aspects of your past.
Sometimes, you may focus on your mistakes and mask the fact that you had some wonderful experiences in the past as well.
These are equally important.
Now I’d love to hear from you?
Do you sometimes struggle with letting go of the past?
What kinds of things help you to remember to just let it go?
What helps you to move on?
Please share your thoughts in the comments below.
I would love to hear your stories.
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