5 Ways to Let Go of the Painful Past

By Helen Holmes on December 19, 2011

 How many times have you thought of your childhood? How many times have your past failures and bitterness sank in your mind? How many times do you worry that the painful experiences and mistakes might happen all over again?

They say that people tend to forget the happy moments and retain all the sad and bitter things that happened in their life even if those situations have long been a history. Feeling sad and bitter about what happened yesterday and the other day is normal but being a slave of the past is something that you should be concerned about. We just don’t know it but sometimes, we tend to hold on to the pain which could have been forgotten over time. And keeping yourself in the painful past causes you stress, tension, depression and anxiety that make your body weak.

Letting go of the past and moving on sounds easy but in truth, it isn’t. However, there are a few things you can do to help yourself cope with the pain and little by little let go of it.

1. Understand that the past is an old page in the book you can’t simply go back to.

Going back to the past all over again will not help you appreciate your life today and your future. Each one of us has our own stories. We are all the lead characters of our own tales. If you’re going to remain at one instance in your life, you’re missing the excitement of moving on to the next page and know what’s about to happen.

2. Think of what you gained instead of what you lost

Most people think of life’s miseries as a painful feeling of loss. But sometimes, these painful moments are what make us stronger. Instead of dwelling on the past and thinking of how miserable your life has been, why not think of the insights and lessons you learned? Moving on begins with realising that things happen for a reason.

3. Find someone to talk to.

Sometimes, we just need to talk it through. Why not open up with a friend or a relative? If you’re not comfortable talking to them, why not see a counsellor? The more you keep your emotions, the more the feelings become intense. You just have to vent it out.

4. Do something different.

If you’re completely used to the same old routine, you’ll find letting go of the past as one of the hardest things that you will have to go through. But if you’re going to focus on some other things, your brain and body will work together to help you forget about the past experiences. Why not engage in a cooking lesson? Why not take a leave from work and travel? The best thing about moving on is that it gives you the best opportunities to do things you haven’t done before.

5. Forgive.

Finally, learn how to forgive. The more you keep grudges, the more you will suffer the pain. Forgiveness sets you free from pain and sadness. It takes away the bad memories. Most of us feel that apology should come from the person who has hurt someone. But the thing is, everyone seems to think this way. Forgiveness is a form of humility which is somewhat hard to do. But if you wanted to be happy and you want to let go of the past, learning this virtue matters the most.

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