“We are products of our past, but we don’t have to be prisoners of it.”– Rick Warren, The Purpose Driven Life
It can be fun sometimes to think about all the things you’ve done. Or maybe just sitting around telling stories about the past. I’ll admit, there can be a lot to learn when we look at things in the past. But, there’s something key in that last sentence. It was only one word. Read over it again if you have to.
The word was… LOOK.
In reality, we should have hung up one of those “Look, but DON’T touch” signs. Maybe then we would get a better grasp on it.
Our past is just that, our past. I don’t know of a single person that go back in time and change a single thing from our past. Admit it for a second that you would if you could. We’ve all been there! We all have things in our past we aren’t proud of, or would like to change. But the truth is the same. We can’t go back. Even if you could, it would completely alter your current state.
It’s called The Butterfly Effect. In simple terms, when a butterfly flaps its wings in order to fly, it causes a ripple in the air that has a tremendous effect on things
So, you see, even if you could change one thing, it would completely alter your current state. (Maybe some would argue that would be better than where they are now.)
What I’m trying to get at is this: The past is the past. The present is now. The future isn’t even here yet.
It’s okay to think about the past. It can be a very effective learning tool. And, that’s really all we should do with it. Learn from it. And, yes, tell stories because I like to tell stories myself.
You have to live life in the right now. You are NOT Uncle Rico! You see how far that got him in life. He’s still trying to go back and get the coach to put him in the game. The game of life doesn’t work that way. If that’s how you want to be, you’re going to be left behind.
Do NOT fall into the trap of looking back at the past wondering what could have been. It won’t help one bit. In fact, it may just make matters worse. For many people, the past can be very traumatizing and depressing. Something they don’t want to experience again, but because they continue to put the things of the past under the microscope, it all comes back.
Allow me to leave you with this:
“Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin.”– Mother Theresa