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The Thing About The Past

November 8, 2010

Pasts, we all have them. Some good. Some bad. And some that we wished we could hold onto. Yes, its “remember that time in High School when” or “that guy from college who”… The problem about the past is that we can’t change anything that happened in it. We can’t change the decisions that we made. Or the people we brought in or who left our lives. There is no “if I could only go back and do that again”. And harder yet there is no button that will magically give you 5 more minutes with that person.

The thing is that the world keeps changing. Time moves on. We change. We aren’t the people that we were 15 years ago, 4 years ago, 6 months ago or even 15 minutes ago. Time moves on. We move on. See the thing about the past is that we never see it with really clear eyes. It warps and changes into memories that are bigger than life. That moment of glory. Sometimes our memories of the past trick us into thinking that if we just changed one thing that we did the outcome would have been different. But how different would it have really been if you could change it?

When it comes to the would of, could of, should ofs we trick ourselves into seeing things that never happened. We attach ourselves to the person that we would have become, but didn’t. But what’s so wrong with you now? Our paths in life wind down many roads. Roads we can’t foresee. Roads that we can’t possibly imagine will appear. Sometimes we detour from that path we wanted to go down. Sometimes there is a fork and we have to make choices. Sometimes the road stops dead in its tracks and we have to find our new path. When that road changes and things become foggy it’s easy to get lost. Things don’t look the same and we trick ourselves into believing that if we had only done something different things wouldn’t have turned out this way. But they did.

What is happening right now is what you have been given to work with. What are you going to do with that? The world changes. People change. The past is a learning tool. Use it as such. Use it to create a better future. Use it to remember to say what you need to say. Use it to take the chances that you are too scared to make. Use it to grow.

See the problem with the past is that it prevents us from seeing what we have and keeps us in the never-ending cycle of wishing to change it.

What have you learned from in your past? How have you used your past to change the future?

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