Yesterday our country celebrated Canada Day! Incredibly thankful for how our nation has been blessed and may we never take it for granted. As I was enjoying a warm summer day outside, I reflected back to my husband, how the past year has changed my life. A year ago I had no idea what Ministry Advantage was, had never met some amazing American friends and would never have guessed that I would have added another certification to my portfolio. Then I looked back further into my past and pondered how my journey on a church staff is now such a huge part of shaping my future.
You see looking back is not a bad thing, as long as you do not long for the past. You can never go back, it will never be the same; that was then and this is now. Whatever happened in your past shapes the future, your thinking, your emotions and your next steps. Those can be positive or negative memories and how you channel through them, will affect how you look to the future. Regrets do not change anything. "If only I had..... " does not change a thing, it will only add emotional baggage to moving forward.
Some may be journeying through a very difficult time in the past, still clinging to the hurts that it brought and carrying broken relationships. The only time you need to revisit those experiences is when you make the decision to leave it in the past and learn from it and move forward. Forgiveness of others, forgiveness of your own actions will accelerate the healing but the healthiest act you can do, is learn from the past so you never make the same mistakes in the future.
I can now look back and see the value in difficult transitions, I can see how they give me a better understanding of people, situations and how to navigate others through similar scenarios.
Looking back should empower you to move forward. I am 55, and realize more of life is behind me than ahead of me. I want to live the future with integrity, passion, intentionality and purpose. I want to do what God has called me to do - no more excuses, looking back, pining for the past or wishing for "what was". I am so excited about the future, I stand in awe of the bends in the road but am now able to look back and say ' thank you, thank you, thank you" because without the past the present would not have happened and the future is yet to surprise me.
So my advice to you , is stop looking back - making excuses and wallowing in self-inflicted pity. We will all endure really difficult things in life, trust me you will, so don't get stuck. Learn from it and use every morsel of energy to launch an exciting future!
I am a Life Coach living in Canada. I enjoy helping people create an awareness of their strengths, their dreams and possibilties.