Guest Post by Jess MattisonOur past is an interesting collection of experiences that’s for sure. There is no getting away from it, or is there? Today, within the popular culture of wellness there is the whole “Be Happy” movement which is very helpful for a lot of people that need to begin to do that work necessary to actually be happy. And if you are familiar with “The Secret” I am sure you know all about this. If you have a negative thought, just change it and, Bob’s your uncle, you’re happy. That is true 100%. I would never say anything against this approach because it is the law of nature, your thoughts become things so if you think negatively you create negativity. So if you want to live and create a life that is positive it is important to think positive.
But what about our past? The haunting regrets that creep in regularly. All those things that make us need to change what we are thinking so as not to create a negative leaning life. How do we put that behind us and create a fresh clean sheet? Well for starters I will say it is not quite enough to fool ourselves for a time so that our thoughts change for the moment. Yes changing our thoughts can put us in a position of not feeling negativity but if we do not address those ever we are not really making any changes. I will again concede that “Fake It Till You Make It” does work for a time but at some point, we want to, I would suspect, actually shed that which is not serving our highest good. To fake it, and expressly admit it, is not going to be that path that ultimately fulfills us.
A great step, once you have accepted that good thoughts are powerful, is to not only change the thoughts but change yourself. The idea here is that if we fake it till we make it, or need to expend energy to change our thoughts, we are admitting we have a fear of the negative. Do not be alarmed by this because fear here is a good thing. It is a barometer that measures the change in our personal atmosphere. Fear is not our responsibility to get rid of, naturally, we really have nothing to fear. That is a hard statement to read without immediately finding 1000 thing that we could be afraid of, but if we agree, and we all may not agree with this, but if we agree that we are all spiritual beings here as physical beings to play this game of life then every experience needs to be welcomed. Again that is not a statement for immature people that want to use it as a reason to hurt others or themselves. This is a real conversation for responsible people that want to better themselves and thereby healing the world.
This all comes down to vulnerability. Can you be vulnerable? Again this is not the being vulnerable with others as many many people do today at large well-funded events for a long weekend. I am asking can you be vulnerable with yourself, and not be afraid of that. Let’s look at liers for instance. If we lie about ourselves nobody can say boo as long as we stick to the lie. And in actuality that is fine. Now if we are honest about our thoughts and we reflect on them we have no choice but to respond to them. That means we have to look at them deeply and look inside ourselves and who we are.
Today we have so many people in the popular culture that are liers, I feel that it is forcing people to be a bit more honest with themselves and that is where healing our past can begin. A lie if we repeat it enough can create the thought as a memory and we can believe it is true, but I cannot accept that the actual truth we are hiding from is not notched within our souls. This will eventually need to be healed, depending on your belief system, in this life or another.
Vulnerability can aid this process. But how can we be vulnerable if we want to stop having negative thoughts and at the same time face our negative past? This is where the pop culture wellness program of change your thoughts can help, but if we don’t also accept that we need to forgive ourselves we may never see the other side of where those fears are holding us. We will then only be opting to exist within a box slightly larger than the one we are growing from.
When we are in a state of relative happiness and feeling secure it is a great exercise to remind ourselves we are being held. This could be by the universe, God, your higher self it really doesn’t matter, because you are being held. We have a friend within us that holds us and protects us, that buddy also goes out and finds what we are asking for, so to build a good rapport with them is another great start to this healing of the past. This is all little by little and step by step. If we can remind ourselves we are safe and that we are held then the fears and memories of our past can be seen differently.
Remembering our past is an important part of who we are. What we can do to grow from that is ask ourselves “How do I remember my past?” Looking at how we approach remembering is important because it is not random, it is actually a message informing us more of who we are and how we see the world. Are we a victim? Are we an oppressor? Are we weak or strong? All of those answers are easy to answer when we don’t have the ability to be vulnerable within ourselves but vulnerability will provide contrast between who we are and who we want to be. It will not always feel good but if we can remember that we are being held and that everything has a purpose we can grow, just a bit, in order to allow ourselves to trust more in the process that is going on around us.
Memory is a funny thing. There are things I remember that other people remember very differently than I do. When I learned that I had to accept the fact that memory is not what happened in the past. Memory is what I have to learn from. Memories do not have to be true, odds are they are not if we really dig into it. Memories come to me at times and I just see them as thoughts or stories. I do not try to analyze them as fact because they can’t be, they are only thoughts today. Looking at those thoughts and quietly watching how we respond, meaning asking questions like, “Where does my heart go? Do I get irritable or sad? How am I affected by this thought?” If there is a reaction other than something positive there is something that is not balanced within us between our physical lives and our soul’s path and who we want to be. Our past is no longer who we are so there are often a lot of negative reactions to who we were because we have learned since then. We are better people today but without those incidences that occurred way back when we could not be the person we are today, that thought needs to be a driving force in forgiving ourselves for who we were.
That is a great way to also remember we are being held. Seeing where we came from and where we are. That is our path. That is our learning. We are safe. We trust in the path even though it doesn’t make sense now. It will work itself out in a way that will surprise us.
No one can ever know all that is happening within us. Although vulnerability out in the world is great, it is the vulnerability to trust in yourself, your path and how who you were contributed to the awesomeness you are today. That is the most important in connecting with and healing the world, the past and the future.