Have you ever wanted to re-live an experience from your past?

Something that you did with your family, friends or past partner that was, “The Best Time EVER”? Maybe it was so great that you decide to re-live it and then, all the sudden you realize, it’s not nearly as great as you remembered it. There is a distinct difference between reminiscing about the past and living in the past. Reminiscing is simply thinking about it and remembering fond memories, whereas living in the past is chosen because it’s familiar.

Think of the middle-aged guy you know that talks about his high school days as a football hero – barf. Or the woman who worked in corporate 3 years ago, who left to become an entrepreneur, and is still trying to run her career as if she’s in corporate – eek. Perhaps it’s the woman who’s been dating the same ‘Peter-Pan’ type man, who won’t commit but she’s dying to get married and have kids – sh*t!

Why the heck do we do this?

First, your brain is an amazing organ. When it comes to remembering, emotional centers in the brain are recruited because they reside close to each other. When you’re recalling the past, your memory recruits the emotion you previously associated with it and you’ll try to either replay it or repel it. Research shows that it’s the familiarity that is comforting and almost addictive in our ever-changing world.

5 Questions to identify if you are living in the past:

  1. Is there a particular period of time you talk or think about 3 times/week?
  2. Do you feel like your happiness will never return to what it was during that time period?
  3. Are you frustrated with your current situation in life?
  4. Are you fearing your future?
  5. When you think about the past, does it make you sad that its over?

If you’ve answered ‘yes’ to 3 of these questions, you may be stuck in your ‘Good Ol’ Days’.

First, you’re not alone and you can move past this. The future is fraught with uncertainty right now. One of the scariest things to think about is the future and what if these best days really are behind us. While some people live in the past because they don’t want to face the present, others live in the past for fear of what may come.

3 Tips To Stay Present So You Can Live The Life You Really Want:

  1. Invest in learning how to think differently. Research shows that creative thinking, visualization and learning to retrain your thinking, changes your results.
  2. Remind yourself of what you want your life to look like and then ask yourself, ‘If I had this life, what would I be thinking about instead?” Write the answers you come up with down and then act on your answers.
  3. Breathe. Breathing should be natural, yet research shows people forget to breath when they’re stressed or worried. Fun fact, excitement and panic are experienced in the same way in the body, the only difference is breath. Athletes use this to help increase success – you can too.

Life is hard. Anyone who said it was easy lied to you. The good news is you do have control over your life; you just need to learn to practice that control. As the adage goes, “Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, today is a gift.”

Andrea Carter

Andrea Carter

CEO & Founder of Wealthy Woman Warrior™

Andrea created her proprietary mindset training, Power To Thrive™ over 15 years ago. We're now in a time where one's environment is constantly changing and pushing people mentally to their limits - if you don't have tools in place to help you navigate disruption, you simply need to get it.  Invest in your mind and your success will follow.  

Andrea Carter is on a mission to empower 1 million women to reach their economic potential by 2025.  She believes that through collaboration and these 5 pillars women can rise to relevance.

Check out her TedX Talk on the Pivot To Gender Parity Today!

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