Stop dwelling in the past

Stop dwelling in the past.

You live now, not then.

The person you were no longer exists. No need to hang on.

The decisions you made in the past are already made. You can’t change them.

I have no regrets anymore. I used to have them. I’m sure a lot of you have regrets. But, I don’t.

It’s not that I don’t sometimes think about how things might be better if I had made a different decision. I do that.

What I don’t do is hold on to the past. I don’t identify with the one who made the decision. The decision was just made, and here I am, experiencing the consequences of it.

It’s like the weather. I don’t get upset about it.

Um…maybe you get upset about the weather…

Nevermind, then.

And I don’t just mean big decisions. Small decisions, too. Like when playing the piano, whatever decisions I made that led to a wrong note, I don’t identify with them.

They just happened. On their own.

But, maybe you don’t even see those as being decisions. Maybe you see them as “careless mistakes”. Maybe for you the problem is that you’re not identifying enough.

Uh huh.

Get rid of this concept of “careless mistakes.” It’s not serving you. It’s getting in your way.

Really, you think the ideal situation is that you’re careful all the time? That’s how you want to live your life?

Seriously, have all the best moments in your life occurred when you were the most careful?

No, you’re not looking at it that way. Instead, you’re looking at the worst moments, and noticing how they happened when you weren’t careful.


Have it your way.

I can just see it now, on your gravestone:

“Here lies [insert your name here].
He/she/it never made a mistake.”

Really, that’s all it will say. They will literally not be able to think of anything else to engrave other than (1) you never did anything wrong, and (2) you’re lying there in the ground.

That’s because if you’re not making mistakes, you’re not making anything else happen either.

A rock makes no mistakes.

“Here lies [insert your name here].
He/she/it will never make another mistake again.”

If you want to stop dwelling in the past, you have to see that mistakes are not bad things. Yes, they might lead to consequences that feel bad. But the mistakes themselves had to happen, felt good at the time, and also lead to good consequences.

You have a choice as to whether you want to identify with them.

I know, you don’t see it that way.

Also, there’s an irony here in that most of you are going to use my own words to beat yourselves up about not being able to choose to stop identifying with your mistakes.

Go ahead, knock yourself out.

Really, I’m serious. That kind of pain is what teaches you how to let go.


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