Attempting to rid ourselves of thoughts of past events or circumstances that we are not proud of, lead us day after day, in a repetitive dance which we seem to never escape from. We are not proud of who we were or what decisions we chose so we keep fighting against this relentless opponent. Our concerns about regrets, failures and setbacks act as a constant reminder of what we wish to never repeat. Yet, by holding onto these visions of our limitations, we continue to keep them alive. Are these not the same things we want to distance ourselves from, so why do we keep them so close to our heart and remind ourselves of all the things we are not proud of?
Striving towards a state of never ending improvement is a noble cause, one that strengthens us with each passing day. Reminding ourselves of the instances when we lacked sufficient strength, hampers our will to improve. When we relive the moments when our strength was not developed as it is now – be it physical to overcome an aggressor, mental to understand all angles of an argument, spiritual to act in a more benevolent manner or emotional to have the will to carry on – we do not allow ourselves to take a step towards our improved sense of self. This tug of war between past inadequacies and a burning desire to become a better human, keeps one foot in the past and the other through the door of improvement. As the two sides of ourselves move in opposite directions, we begin to feel an intense pulling at our core. These are the rips and breaks which present themselves as guilt, anxiety, depression, heartache and defeat.
What’s our past really? Is it a fond memory, a failed attempt at love, a great victory, a poor choice of words, a beautiful work of art, a pointless argument or a moment of learning? If we must answer this succinctly, the answer is both all and none of the aforementioned. If we choose to reflect deeper, our past is what has shaped us to become who are today, but it is not what keeps us on the path we choose to continue traveling along. Our history is what we decide it to be, by keeping alive what nurtures our growth and nourishes our happiness. Yet, many of us choose to nourish a virus which continually damages us and continues to encourage our sorrows. But this has to be blasphemous? Who would ever want to remain in a state of illness and dwell in sorrow?
We do what makes us happy and if we are continually miserable whenever we are alone and among friends, family and strangers alike, then we must ironically enjoy being so. Our past has nothing to do with us today, unless we decide that what happened yesterday is much more important than our experiences of today. If this was not the case, we would see each morning as it truly is, a reset, a starting of a new chapter and an unfolding of another fantastic journey. So this must not be, it can no way be our choosing, it has to be because of our upbringing, that one teacher who criticized us, our past romantic relationship, our old neighborhood, our old boss, our legal system, our educational system, our provincial healthcare and our government. Surely these things are the sources of our hardships, it was because of them that we are where we find ourselves. We could be so much further, so much greater, so much happier…
We could also be much wiser, by our own accord, and seek not an object of blame but rather a moment of onus and personal accountability.
There are things which we may not be proud of, things which we may have wanted to do differently and things which we would have liked to unfold in others ways, but these things are not meant to be harbored and recited daily, they are meant to be the winds that fill our sails and push us towards our true paradise. We are the ones who guide our ships, the wind merely blows. It is not up to us to separate the breezes from the storms. It is up to us to cast our sails and control our rudders so that we may harness the winds and steer ourselves to greatness!
Whatever we hold on to remains real and will not be overcome or transcended until they are forgotten and let go of. Will you choose to stay in your yesterday’s and relive defeat each morning or will you finally decide to open your sail and use what once caused storm clouds to dominate your days and harness those same forces to propel you towards your paradise?
Most people are rowing against the current of life. Instead of turning the boat around, all they need to do is let go of the oars.
– Esther Hicks