Put It In the Rearview

24 Jul Put It In the Rearview

Why It’s SO Important to Put the Past in the Past

By Motivational Keynote Speaker Darryl Davis

One of the things we absolutely need to do if we are to have a life worth smiling about is to FORGIVE more. We need to forgive ourselves and even forgive others who have wronged us. When we hang onto resentment and negative feelings, we create baggage in our life that weighs us down. It’s just like when you check in at the airport; if you have extra baggage, it costs you. Well, in life, when you have extra baggage, it also costs you—obviously not in a monetary sense, but I’d say that these costs are way more important. Hanging onto past hurt, anger, and regrets will cost you your energy and peace of mind.

When we don’t forgive someone, whether it’s ourselves or others, we are hanging onto something that happened in the past, something that no longer exists. Every time we think of that painful memory, focus on it, complain about it, share it with others, or dwell on it, we are literally bringing our past into our present, which prevents us from creating a future that really makes us smile.

Here’s an acronym that may help you to forgive yourself and others more quickly:

PAST. Predictable. If we focus on the past, we are living from the past. And if we live from the past, we are creating a future that isn’t based on possibility. Do you know some people who, no matter what job they have (or what boss they have), seem to keep complaining about the same thing? That’s an example of someone who’s living from the past (when they keep complaining about it) and creating a predictable future.

Anchor. Living from the past anchors us and weighs us down. It keeps us from moving forward in our life.

Sacrifice. When you do not forgive yourself or others, you sacrifice joy, happiness, and being complete in your life. Instead, you experience fear, sadness, resentment, and even hatred.

Tired. When you’re living from your past, complaining about your past, thinking about your past, or wishing that your past was different, that just tires you out (just like when you carry too much baggage through the airport terminals)! Drop Your Baggage and forgive.

Part of letting go and moving forward is to forgive yourself! Upsets, mistakes, bad decisions, fights with others—they all occurred in the past. You can’t change or fix them. So, what do you do with them? Leave them alone! Let them be! A mistake from your past is similar to a wound on your body that has a scab on it. I know this is not a pleasant visual but hang in there with me. Every time you pick the scab, you reopen the wound. You need to leave it alone and give it time to heal.

When you make a mistake, every time you feel guilty or beat yourself up about it, the destructiveness of that initial action is being played out yet again. Instead, redeem yourself by doing something positive and constructive in your life. When you live from your past, it’s like driving a car while staring at your rearview mirror. One of two things will happen: you will crash, or you will end up in an entirely different place from where you wanted to be.

Need help putting the past in the past? Check out my book, How to Live a Life Worth Smiling About or give me a call to find out what bringing this topic to YOUR organization can mean for your productivity, profitability and level of joy. All three are essential for building momentum.

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