Are you the kind of person who dwells on the past?
We all do it to an extent. Some of us more than others.
But have you ever found yourself getting stuck in a groove, replaying a mistake in your mind, over and over, ten, twenty, even thirty years after the fact?
You know the old maxim: "You get what you focus on." Has it occurred to you that when you dwell on past mistakes, you're setting up yourself to fail - again?
We all make mistakes. That's why there's a delete key on your computer. If everything we did was perfect first time out, our lives would be bland and most likely, unmemorable.
Our mistakes, our errors in judgment, our embarrassing interludes, help us grow and learn and become wise. But replaying them in our minds, cringing and wishing they'd worked out differently is a surefire way of ensuring the same kind of result in the future.
Don't Make Excuses
Have you ever noticed that most people have a hundred reasons why they shouldn't pursue their dreams?
Worse - they have a hundred reasons why you shouldn't pursue your dreams.
It's like some unspoken pact between 'ordinary' people.
They will present 'evidence' that supports their cause. Evidence that comes from experience, advice, feedback and watching TV. Evidence that seems compelling - but only if you happen to be in a negative frame of mind.
Super-successful people don't do this. They look for evidence of the opposite.
Super-successful people know that in amongst a thousand ordinary folks determined to live their lives 'hanging on in quiet desperation,' there are others who refuse to believe that life should be simply endured.
Opportunities hit all of us, all of the time. Trouble is, we're so wrapped up in our own little worlds, we ignore them or rationalize them away, even reject them.
Don't You Look Back
Stop for a moment.
How much time every day do you spend thinking about past events? I'm willing to bet the older you get, the more times you do it - almost automatically.
If you find yourself thinking about the past more than two or three brief times a day, you're holding back your dreams.
As an experiment, make a log - whenever you catch yourself thinking about something that happened way back, note it down - and resolve to correct this limiting habit.
Why? Because your past is irrelevant. Outside of your own mind it doesn't even exist. Mostly, it's just junk that clutters up your brain.
And slowly destroys you...
So - what's the answer?
If you want a fun, exciting and super-successful life from this point on, you have to start thinking about tomorrow.
You meet them all the time - people with rigid views about everything. People who can list all the reasons why things happen, why individuals and groups act and react the way they do, and why certain things are possible and why most wonderful things are impossible.
These are the same people whose lives are over. They've stopped learning and keeping their minds and hearts flexible.
Our lives are a series of events from which we learn and adjust. But to believe that one opinion holds true forever is a myth.
Tomorrow is another day and new truths, new evidence will emerge that disproves the past, again and again.
The generation before us was convinced that safety and security were all there was to aspire to. And what did they experience? Hardship, depression, two world wars, disease and poverty, violence and cruelty that caused more suffering than at any other time in history. And they tell us they were the good old days?
Don't Be Fooled
We live in our most exciting time. And that time is now.
Wisdom is not just knowledge. The pursuit of wisdom involves a willingness to absorb the future and its endless possibilities. True wisdom is never closing your mind to believing you can improve, excel yourself and follow your dreams, whatever your age or skill level.
There are no limits. You are only ever limited by what you believe.
Start believing that tomorrow can and will be different. That there is hope - and a chance for us to make a better world, where we can fulfill our destinies, if only we choose to do that.
Let Go of Your Past
The past is holding you back. It's like a large stone fastened to your neck that won't let you move forward. But remember: you have always had the key to your own shackles.
You don't need to keep living in a phantom place that only you created. Unlock the ties that bind you. The key is in your thoughts.
Consciously decide you will no longer let the past absorb you. Whenever you find yourself dwelling on past events, deliberately reject the associated thoughts and images. Replace them with musings and uplifting visualizations on the future - the forever undiscovered country.
Make a commitment now to take every negative thought you have and turn it around. See the positive. See the benefits. See the bright light of hope and opportunity that exists for all of us, all of the time.
The past is gone. It has no hold over that you don't give it.
Believe in yourself - and your dreams.
DLB - Don't Look Back.
Trust in the future and...
(c) Rob Parnell
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