I have been on a big crusade of sorts lately to do this myself, and get others to do it as well.
Purge the Poison.
You are not your past; it doesn’t define you. Whether is was great or horrific, it doesn’t do anything other than give you perspective as you look forward. Stop dragging that luggage with you.
Everyone has a version of their own reality, their past, and these things help shape how they see the future. Here is the problem with that: It is very limiting. You are not the same person you were six months ago, and you are definitely not the same person you were six years ago. So why are you allowing age-old mindsets and experiences define your future? That would be the equivalent of you logging onto your computer 25 years ago and never changing from over AOL browser and email.
TIME TO EVOLVE
I have been fortunate to have accomplished some really cool things in my past, and I have had my share of crappy stuff too. In some ways, neither has more value than the other; both sides of that coin are valuable as experiences, and I do my best to take away the lessons offered from both. But neither dictates my future. Past successes are just that, in the past. And similarly, past failures and shortfalls are no more of a predictor either. The Patriots still have to go play in the regular season of the NFL every year; they don’t get to skip to the playoffs just because last year they won the Superbowl. The NFL doesn’t work that way, and neither does life.
Yes, there are advantages to having a track record of success, I get that. But you still have to perform. If I make President’s Club for my sales efforts this year, and next year don’t even make quota…I’m gonna need to update my resume. But there is a silver lining to this: Every day, every opportunity is a new chance to do it right, to hit it big, to make your mark.
Past failures do not seal your fate either. Allow me to make an official announcement if you need to hear it: HIGH SCHOOL HAS ENDED. You are not the same neurotic nerd you were back then. You are no longer the quarterback of the football team either. Those social anointments, good or bad, no longer apply. Stop letting your past dictate how you see yourself now.
If you look way back into your childhood, you may have some things that are still weighing on you heavily. I am not an expert in this area, nor do I want to pretend to be. What I did with some of those things worked for what I had experienced. I don’t want to be so pretentious as to prescribe you a “solution”, as everyone’s story is different. But what I do feel confident is telling you to do is this: Take ACTION and starting solving the problem(s). Lots of people just live their lives like their past is a future sentence. Get professional help if you need to, read or do research on your own if that is sufficient, or at least a good starting point. Whatever you do, start soon. Like NOW. Purge the Poison and start getting a new outlook on what lies ahead. Life is a mirror; if you look for bad things, it is easy to find them. But just as easily, if you can start to look at things differently, you can find a lot of good and a lot of opportunity out there.
I wish you luck with your endeavor.