Belief in the Do-Over: Can You Re-Write Your History?
One of the things that we human beings have in common is an occasional wish to re-write some aspect of our history.
We have all had experiences, reactions or taken some action that we regret and wish that we could have a “do-over” because, if we could, we'd make different choices.
It might have been a misunderstanding with a loved one, an over-reaction with a friend, a mistake on a job, a cross word you didn’t mean or any one of the other countless experiences that you know just wasn’t your shining hour.
We often hear that we need to “leave the past behind” or “let by-gones be by-gones”, but sometimes that’s hard to do when the pain is still active in your heart and mind.
Frequently, we tend to hold onto painful moments longer than we need to because we haven’t completely released the feelings associated with unresolved trauma or conflict.
Most of the time, it’s because we’re still trying to understand the “why” behind it.
Feelings like guilt, shame, anger, frustration, abandonment, betrayal, resentment or hatred are the most common emotions people wrestle with. Any of these ring a bell with you from an unresolved or painful experience from your past? It’s not fun is it?
All of us have experienced these emotions at one point or the other. They can be tough to shed when you feel stuck in a moment of time where the emotions began, especially if you felt you were the one that was treated unfairly.
Inevitably something will continue to trigger that memory again and you immediately feel that stab of emotion in your gut or your heart, no matter how long ago the event took place.
So, what can you do to move on from these moments? Is it possible to re-write your history for a different or better ending?
The answer is both yes and no.
When I say “no”, I mean that we can’t erase the fact that the event actually took place or the resulting damage it might have done to you or others. But, despite that history, you CAN create a happier ending for yourself in several ways.
If you were on the receiver end of the pain and the person that treated you that way is unremorseful and unwilling to change, there is a possibility that they might not be open, or mature enough, for you to be able to find common ground with them to create a mutually beneficial new ending to the story.
But, if you were the one behind the hurtful action or words, you can make a huge difference in how that story is resolved by taking full ownership of it. No excuses. No blaming others. Just own it, no matter who or what else contributed to it.
By taking ownership of whatever action or words we've created, as long as we do it without self judgement, guilt or shame, we allow ourselves to see the bigger picture. We give ourselves room to see our behavior, and those around us, from a different perspective that we might not have been willing to see in the past during a moment of anger or fear.
The next way you can re-write your history is to see the painful experience for what it really is, and that is: it’s simply one of a million opportunities to learn and grow from.
After all, it’s a universal truth that we typically learn more about ourselves from the uncomfortable experiences than the comfortable ones, right?
By shifting that perspective to a more neutral space, it makes it easier for us to accept it as just a moment of learning and do better the next time a similar circumstance presents itself. Because, it is the nature of this world to continue to repeat our patterns until we finally understand it’s benefit to our growth before we can truly move on.
So, ask yourself this, and answer honestly, “if I was presented with this situation again in the future, what would I do differently?” and “Have I learned what I needed to in order to move on to a healthier, happier emotional space?
Here’s another biggy! Ask yourself this. “Is there an opportunity for me to address and rectify an old wound with the person or people that created it for me or were on the receiving end of my hurtful actions?”
But, while you may want to re-write history for all parties involved, this isn’t always possible. It still warrants working through the process for your own benefit though because, in the end, you are only truly responsible for one person – YOU!
If a person physically or emotionally mistreated or abused you, I do not advocate attempting to re-write your relationship with them. If you can find it in your heart to wish them compassion without creating extreme discomfort or pain for yourself, it is an act of empowerment and love that will start the path to healing.
Because you ALWAYS have the power to re-write the relationship you have with yourself and how your perspective affects you in the here and now.
By taking these steps, you give yourself the gift of finally being able to release that history, only taking from it what serves you now moving forward, letting go of the rest, then putting the person or event squarely in the past where they belong.
Re-writing your personal history should never be centered around just wishing something hadn’t happened to you in the past. It should be about finally finding freedom from it having any further effect on your life now or in the future.
You are in the driver’s seat my friend! Write a different, better ending that allows you to enjoy who you’ve become and who you aspire to be!
If you think you need a little extra coaching help and support to move past the blocks those old wounds have created for you, I'm here to help! I conduct coaching sessions by phone or by Zoom session to ensure the health and safety of my clients. In addition, I’m offering a 25% off per any session you book by the end of May. Just use the code springspecial25 when you book and pre-pay for any session.
To schedule, go to https://www.turningpointscoaching.com/book-online
Be safe. Stay healthy. Stay strong.