One of the biggest questions that I get asked is how to let go of the past? Is it even possible to be free from the past? How do you make peace with the past?
These questions are very touching for me as I struggled for decades to make peace with the past. This means, I was literally living and reliving the stories of my past over and over again. Do you know the copy and pasting button on your computer, well basically that was my life, copying and pasting. I got so fed up of having the same repeated happen in my life that at one point, I felt like I had no hope and I wanted to give up. I wondered if life was working and if I was working.
I’m sure that if you have read it this far then consciously you know that living in the past is doing you no good, it’s overwhelming and it makes you wonder HOW you can possibly move forward and if freedom exist for you. After I master peace and made absolute peace with my past, it became a calling for me to help others too and since then I have helped thousands of people heal from trauma and past pain such as divorce, miscarriages, loss of loved ones, breakups, disappointments and also physical / verbal abuse in a family and I can assure you that there is light at the end of the tunnel and that there is hope for a new beginning for you.
How You Can Get Started
Let’s reflect on some of the stories that you might have that are stuck in your mind for example, it can be a simple phrase that you repeatedly say like:
- He or She will never change
- They always do this
- Men / Women are _________. They do __________. (Generalization)
- It’s just how my life is.
- I have to accept that I have no choice. I don’t have a choice.
- They __________ me. (hurt, cheat, lie, angers, frustrates … the list goes on here.)
- I deserve it. I only attract these type of people into my life.
- I am not good enough. No body loves and accepts me. No one wants me.
These are some of the phrases that your mind is used to because of an event that might have happened in the past and this has become so natural for you to react and repeat these type of sentences inside your mind without even realizing it! There are emotions that are clearly triggered from these thoughts such as resentment, lack, fear, sadness, anger, frustration and so on.
When I was in college, I remembered my own pattern, something bad happens to my life and immediately, I would text or call a friend to share what just happened, that became a pattern for me and so if I wanted to change my life, I had to really be super crystal clear and aware of my behaviors and rewire my brain to behave differently. So instead of calling a person right away to sharing a drama that I had, I would go for a shower, read a book, take a walk, contemplate, listen to some music, do anything but THAT which I was used to.
Deepak Chopra said, “Every time you are tempted to react in the same old way, ask if you want to be a prisoner of the past or a pioneer of the future.” There is really is no short cut on this one and the decision that you can make lies in the first few seconds so taking deep breaths before you react, reply, respond really helps.
Your Biography Becomes Your Biology
Another teacher of mine, Caroline Myss says “Your Biography Becomes Your Biology”, she also shared that your physical body is an information center, it’s always communicating with you. Whatever thoughts you hold about your past, the traumatic experience, it’s shaping your physical body and so for you to learn to let go of the past including the chronic symptoms, such as neck pain, back pain, knee pain or severe migraine and headache – you may want to listen to its biography and history.
Before you get into the immediate reaction, “It’s back,” “It’s never going to go away,” “I’m doing everything I can, why is it still here,” it’s very helpful for you to switch the story by saying “I see you are here, I wonder if you have something to remind me.” “I wonder what gift do you have for me today” take this moment as an enlightened moment like it’s a pathway to uncover more of yourself.
I remember when I had severe lower back pain on my left side, my whole day would fall apart, I dread it and fear that it would come back when it’s gone and so it did come back. The next time around, I decided to embrace the symptoms but from a new perspective, I took that as a sign to learn, to grow, to communicate and even to understand my ancestral line better by asking questions such as:
- Hello pain, what do you want to share with me today?
- What gift do you have for me?
- What can I learn from you?
- Does anybody in my lineage have this and why?
- What’s the symbolism of this?
- What can I do to make you feel better?
It really helps if you can write it down as the pain can sometimes be too strong for you to focus on hearing, I have done this with many clients and they reported back that their pain dropped down by half.
Bless the Past
I know first-hand how hard it is to even begin blessing the past and all the pain that you feel like others might have caused you but I believe that relationships are a two-way street, there is something in us that is triggering that in them to behave that way and as much as we want to throw the responsibility on to the others, we need to remember to be GOOD to ourselves first.
Before you bless the past and allow the wisdom from the past to be your lessons learnt in the present, give yourself space to release emotions. I particularly love the Emotional Guidance Scale by Abraham Hicks because it gives me comfort and clarity to know where my emotions are at and so when you look at the scale, you might be at number 22 to start with but as you continue to self-soothe, your emotions would be higher in the ladder.
Many people misunderstand that you either are happy or sad,angry or joyful but there are so many other emotions in between. Being in pessimism is better than being in fear and that’s good enough. This guidance scale also helps you to celebrate yourself a bit and bless who you are that you are able to move up and down, shift and change and this can shed a light that new beginning is already happening for you right now.
Compassion is Key
Having compassion for yourself, for your past even though there might be parts of you that feels shameful about your past, guilty about your past or even sad about your past, having compassion for yourself is the key that opens a door of possibility for you to move on into the future.
The moment, I accepted myself, my insecurities and all the feelings of shame and guilt, this energy of love and compassion just flows through, I was able to forgive the people who’s hurt me and literally move on. Compassion is a practice and you start that with a gentle hug, giving yourself positive notes, focus on self-soothing – I wrote an article last week that might give you some more ideas on how you can show up for yourself.
When you can be compassionate for yourself and show up for yourself with love and kindness, you can begin to have compassion for others too. In this video, I shared with you more powerful tools to support you to move into a loving space.
With this, I want to share that moving forward is a constant choice that you will have to make in your every day life. Don’t ever disregard little wins, tiny things that you are doing well. Continue to compliment yourself, celebrate yourself even when no one is watching. You will get there eventually and when you look back, you will see that the continuous effort and your consistency really paid off.
Remember, everything new comes from something that has ended, the Universe supports you on this journey and so do I.