Nothing good will ever come out of dwelling on the past. Just make sure you don’t get stuck! I don’t mean that it’s wrong to look back at past memories and experiences by that. I suggest to rather be conscious about your actions and the motivation behind your actions. It is not healthy, if you for some reason are living through past memories, such as losing a loved one, a breakup, a failed test, or a lost job. These negative experiences might hold you back from being able to move forward. Being stuck with these feelings and negative thoughts will most likely only amplify your suffering and it will surely not contribute to a better future. To start with I will give you some questions you can ask yourself. Once you answered these questions, it will help you become conscious where you are at right now. It will also be the first step on your way how to get out of the past, as well as helping you move forward towards your bright future.

There is nothing wrong with so called “negative feelings”; they are there for a reason. Pain is helping to avoid similar situations in the future, fear protects us, anger can help us to stand up for ourselves, and so on. When we deal with loss or other stressful situations, it is perfectly natural to be emotional. Give yourself time to experience grief, be anxious, be angry, and then let it go. Learn from your experiences and take that wisdom with you into the future.  We live, we fall, we rise, we learn, and we grow. 

Questions you can ask yourself to get out of your past and into your new & bright future. 

First you need to analyze the situation so you can learn from the experience. You should start by asking yourself these questions:

  1. Identify the situation, what happened?
  2. What went wrong? Why?
  3. Could you have done anything differently? If so, what?
  4. What went right/when were things good? Why?
  5. What in this situation can you learn from and take with you into the future?

After identifying what you have learned you should identify the feelings that are attached to the situation and how you cope with them. This will make you more conscious and make it easier to take back control when your emotions get too overwhelming. 

  1. Which emotion is strongest in this situation? 
  2. Are there other emotions that are present? List them
  3. How do you allow your emotions come to play? Do they overwhelm you, or can you control them?  
  4. What can you do to cope with those feelings, so they don’t become overwhelming? (Distract yourself by listening to music? Read? Watch TV? Go to the gym or go for a walk? Do breathing exercises and mindfulness? Cuddle with your dog? Go meet a friend or something else?) 

After you have identified both what you can learn from the situations and your coping mechanisms you need to take a look at the people in your life. Make sure you surround yourself with people, who support you. 

  1. Are there people in your life, who encourage you?
  2. Are there people in your life, who have a negative influence on you and your life? If so, you should consider letting them go, or at least spend less time with them and rather use more time with the ones supporting you.

Last but not least it’s time to set new goals and make new plans for the future. It’s important to find something that you can look forward to!

  1. List the things you would want to do in the future (take a class, travel, find a dream job etc.)
  2. What can you do to get you one step closer to you goal? 
  3. Make a plan, and go get it! 

Remember; take one day at the time, that way it won’t be too overwhelming. 

Here’s to the bright future!

Karianne 🙂

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