Your new outlook must start with putting the past behind you and looking toward the future. That mean your past failure, your past pain, your past accomplishment, those that hurt you and those you have hurt.
Philippians 3:12-13 (NLT2)
No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead,
If you can learn How your Best is yet to Come?
- Learn from the past but don’t dwell there.
Yes. Those negative experiences you had can actually be used for learning and future experiences — no matter how painful they are. Take some time to reflect on the experience and look at ways at it can actually benefit you down the road.
You can learn from your experiences by reflecting on these few simple questions:
- What really happened? Answer only by confronting the facts.
- What emotions do I feel? I personally like to write them down.
- How can I use this to empower myself and my feelings?
After answering these questions, it’s time to move on. While reflecting on the past for a little bit of time is acceptable, dwelling on it will only keep those negative thoughts and feelings around.
- Express your feeling in real time.
Don’t hesitate to get the pain you’re feeling off your chest. Whether it’s talking to the individual who has harmed you (or who you harmed), venting to a friend or writing it down, expressing your feelings can assist you in sorting out what, if anything, needs to be done to move on.
More importantly, it’s good for your health. Holding onto your feelings leads to anxiety, depression, headache and high blood pressure.
“When it’s time to express your real feelings, make sure to use “I” messages. Describe the degree of your emotions, and share them with someone who will listen and not pass judgment. This will help you express the grief you’re going through.”
- Don’t play the blame game.
Playing the role of the victim is easy and sometimes feels pretty good, especially compared with accepting the truth. The problem is, blaming others prevents you from going forward. Most often, pointing fingers is just complaining.
Blaming others gives power to someone else and makes us small. “When we blame, we automatically enter the negative zone. We detest someone else or some external factor because we were not able to mold life into our own favor.”
- Focus on the present and less on the past.
One of the most effective ways to let go of the past is to grip the present. Instead of reliving the past and getting consumed with negativity, keep yourself active and enjoy the current moment. Learn to use all the talents God has given you. Meditate. Exercise. Make a new circle of friends. In this life just live in the present – even if it’s just sitting at home and watching the clouds roll by. Begin to create something new out of the talent(s) God gave you.
Living in the moment, also called mindfulness, “involves being with your thoughts as they are, neither grasping at them nor pushing them away.” Find a good place in your mind and learn to mediate there.
To achieve a more mindful state, be aware of what you are thinking and feeling, reduce self-consciousness, seek out new experiences and accept your negative feelings and situations as merely being a part of life.
- Disconnect for some people who take you down.
Allow yourself to take some time away so that you can clear your head. You don’t have to go on vacation. Just remove yourself from the situation by distancing yourself from the people, places and things that remind you of the past. Practicing ways to disconnect for a while will give you the chance to experience something positive — even if that’s just reading or coloring a drawing.
When you return, you’ll have a perspective on the past.
- Think about the people that surround you.
Take inventory of the people that surround you. Who is negative and always bringing you down? Who are the people associated with the past that you’re trying to move away from? You may need to move away from these individuals to find more positive people who will empower you.
There are more than enough ways to meet new people, such as attending local church and workshops. Don’t be shy. Get yourself out there and find a new group of friends and acquaintances who can help you move forward.
- Forgive those who wronged you — including yourself.
If you’ve been hurt by someone, the last thing that you may want to do is forgive them. “Forgiving others is essential for spiritual growth.” Forgiving other is like embracing the past while moving on, making a new agreement with self, not going to sleep angry and being kind and generous.
While you’re at it, forgive yourself. No one is perfect and we all make mistakes. Instead of kicking yourself for your past mistakes, cut yourself some slack and focus on the lessons that you’ve learned.
Once you’re not carrying that anger and resentment, you’ll be able to move on.
- Make new memories.
Finally, start making new, positive memories to replace those negative memories from the past. Spend your time with the people who make you happy, the things that bring you joy and in the places that bring you peace. Making new memories is better being stuck in the past.