How to Change Your Past
I used to think it was impossible to change my past.
Now… you can’t actually go back in time and change the facts of what happened, unless maybe you have Doc Brown in your corner with a DeLorean and 1.21 gigawatts to fuel the flux capacitor. But assuming you’re just a regular gal like me, time travel isn’t an option. The good news is that you don’t need to travel back in time to change your experience of it. You just need change the story you keep telling yourself about what happened.
Stay with me here.
Our past is over. The way we experience our past is through thoughts we choose now. This means we have the power to change how we experience our past. (You might want to re-read that.)
The pain we feel now is not caused by our past. It’s caused by thoughts we’re are choosing NOW.
This means that you don’t have to feel pain about your past if you don’t want to. You are fully empowered to decide how you want to think and feel about your past. No DeLorean required.
This is amazing, right?
Let me give you an example.
Story #1: I came from a broken family. My parents divorced when I was just a toddler. It’s so sad because I don’t have any memories of the three of us together as a family. When I was in elementary school they each re-married and I was forced to go back and forth like a ping pong ball, never settling in one place for too long. I was my parents’ only child and I hated that because it was so lonely not having any real brothers or sisters to share my pain. I had a stepbrother who was my complete opposite, always in trouble at school and making life hard for my parents. We fought all the time. Holidays in my family were complete chaos because we had to rotate around so much. It was such a nightmare to be in a family with four overly protective parents, all of them hovering over my every move and ready to jump in if I screwed up. I wish I could have been from a normal family.
Story #2: I had a unique family and enjoy telling our story. My parents divorced when I was a toddler which was nice because I don’t have any bad memories about the split. When I was in elementary school they each remarried, and I got to have a beautiful bedroom at each house with double the toys! My step-parents were very loving people and they cared about me just as much as my parents did and were always there to support me. I also was lucky enough to have a step-brother. He was fiercely loyal to me and while we didn’t share the same hobbies and fought as siblings do, he was always there to keep me safe. He got in trouble a lot which worked well for me because my parents were convinced I was an angel and so I got away with more than I probably would have otherwise. Holidays were the best in my family because I had tons of grandparents to give me presents! I was truly a lucky girl to have four parents. There was always someone available to listen to me and show an interest in my life or help me solve a problem. I’m grateful that I had such a unique family.
Same facts, different thoughts about those facts. Story #1 feels terrible but Story #2 feels amazing is and I get to feel good when I think it. Both options are equally true.
What stories have you been telling yourself about your past that are causing you pain? Give yourself the gift of re-writing the way you tell them.