"How you see
and how you feel about today,
has a lot to do with
how you see
and how you feel about the past."
-- Albert K. Strong
New: Audio version
[Classic post from 3-30-15]
The good ole' days. Those were the days that are better than today. I was in my prime, I was younger then, life was easier then, I was naive then. So as I look back or see photos of the past, I think how much better it was then. When I do this, my present is diminished considerably.
I was sharing a 25-year old photograph with a friend. It was good times then. It is now as well. When I look at the past with gratitude, joy, appreciation, I am doing that in the present, so I am enjoying that and feeling those emotions right now. If I look at the past as if those were the days, better days than now, or wish that I could go back to them, I am feeling those emotions right now and they are guiding my life right now.
This is a perfect reason to appreciate the past, find joy in the past, regardless of what went on. If I look at a past event that had pain attached at the time, those emotions of pain and trauma are in my present and I am feeling them in my life right this minute, not in the past. I am recreating them now. How do you suppose that affects today? Or even tomorrow?
It seems natural to have memories stored in two columns--the good memories in column A and the bad and painful memories in column B. But, that is not natural, and it doesn't serve me.
If I find the appreciation for what was, the joy in the experience, or the joy in the learning from experience, or the idea that things happened then because that is how you were and others were then, I will feel the appreciation, joy, and knowledge gained right now, today. I am the accumulation of all of my experiences.
Many people I have known over the years have left this Earth physically. What I think about that and how I feel about that has everything to do with how I think and feel today. If I am feeling sad that they are gone, I am feeling that today. It is affecting how I live, think and feel today. If I look at those events with appreciation, growing love, and joy, I am experiencing that today, right now, and that changes the event to something positive right now.
So, the way I see the past has everything to do with how I see my present. How I feel about the past, has everything to do with how I feel about the present. And, I am thinking and feeling all of that in the present.
They say you can't change the past. You've heard that over and over again. It's untrue. You can change the past. The only way you can change the past is by changing how you think about it, and feel about it, and talk about it today. We are always so much more in control of our lives than we think. When you realize that you CAN change the past to something that you can love and appreciate, you are exercising a power that changes worlds.
No Matter What It May Seem Like, There Is Only The Present. And, It Is A Present. It Is A Gift.
Spread Some Joy Today--by simply enjoying your day, and any other days that come into your present.