Looking back in time for some can be a painful experience. We can feel empowered to drive our future but we often feel powerless to face our worst memories. That begs the question – do we have the power to change our past?
Changing our past doesn’t make sense does it. But what if we can change the way we interpret our past.
The past is what you make of it. We all have a story to tell. Some of it is good and some, well, not so good. But just remember that for every bad memory in your past, there always is some good that comes out of it. And ask yourself if at the end of it all, you’d like to remember the good times or the bad. The positive memories are the catalyst to rewrite your future. Remember that even if it’s all bad (and there are some bad stories out there), rebrand it to rewrite your history.
There are a couple of things you can do to change your memories. The best thing about it is that it is uplifting and paves the way for how you interpret your future one day.
Listen to old music.
Open up your music player or revive those old records. Or go digital and find a neat playlist full of songs from your past. Make a commitment to listen to a song or two every day. When listening to each song, the most important thing is to not judge the song. Simply listen to it and attempt to listen to lyrics, melodies, or anything that you overlooked when those songs were brand new. Embrace the music – at first you may bring back some tough memories or feelings, but after a while, I guarantee you some good feelings will come about. Do appreciate the good feelings that each song brings to you, even if the song reminds you of tough times. Rebrand your memories of this song by focusing on the positive that surrounded you back then. Remember, there is always some positive that you can extract from each and every situation.
View old photographs.
Take out the photo album and look at old photos of times that bring back some sort of negative emotion. Appreciate the times that were going on when the photo was taken, because, chances are that people were happy when those pictures were taken. And for those pictures that were taken in not so good times, appreciate that you’ve learned something from that experience. You can’t grow unless you undergo some form of pain.
Visit old places from childhood.
Get in the car and drive to places that you remember so well. You’ll probably noticed how things have changed, and you might feel nostalgia or some sort of pain that things have changed. Don’t feel this. Embrace how those places have evolved and how they are somebody else’s future memories now. Sit there and look at the places; become immersed in the moment. Feel like you are there again. And think about the positive times, not the negative ones.
Rekindle with old friends or family you haven’t seen for a while.
Call up an old friend that you haven’t seen in a while. And if you feel calm enough to venture outside your comfort zone, reach out to somebody that perhaps was never your favourite. Or at best, don’t ignore people like that when you cross them at the mall. Rekindling with great people that shaped your past cements your character for the future. Reminisce good memories with your friend.
The life cheer takeaway: The important thing here to remember is that for every memory, you have a choice – just like with the present, you can dwell on the negative, or choose to focus on the positive. I vote to choose the positive. You will feel better, and good things are attracted to you when you remain positive.