Check Your Baggage at the Door: 7 Ways to Let Go of Your Past

Do you find yourself dwelling on the past excessively?  Do you struggle with feelings of unworthiness about what you did?  Do you live with heavy feelings of regret or shame?  Hey Friend, if you worry about what has been or what might have been you overlook what is.

Put the Glass Down

I want you to pretend that I’m holding a glass of water in my hand. How heavy do you think the glass is? A lot? A little?

Your answer is irrelevant because it all depends on how long I hold it. If I hold the glass in my hand for 1 or 2 minutes it’s fairly light.  If I hold it for 1 hour my arm will probably begin to ache. If I hold it for 1 day my arm will cramp, go numb, and I’ll probably drop the glass! The weight doesn’t change, but the longer I hold the glass the heavier it will feel.  

Our bouts of frustrations, bitterness, anger, disappointments, and unmet expectations are normal and nothing drastic happens when we hold onto them for brief amounts of time. However, if we hold on to those same feelings of bitterness, anger, disappointments, and unmet expectations for days, months, and even years our lives will be affected in very negative ways. Our personal growth will be stunted and our feelings will affect the people around us. 

The best way for us to let go of the past is to fix the root so we can enjoy the fruit!  In other words, it’s time for us to check our baggage at the door and get on with life!

Look!

So what should we do?  We need to open our eyes and look!

  1. Look at It! The first step to change is to take a good hard look and identify what it is from your past that is causing you to hold onto the “baggage” of bitterness, anger, disappointments. Ugly words were spoken to you years ago?  Betrayal by a friend or significant other? Take a look and identify.
  2. Look at the “Right Now.”  How is this “baggage” damaging or stunting you? Is it messing with your relationships?  Is it causing you to lose sleep?  Is it causing your health to decline?  
  3. Look Inside.  Have you acknowledged the need for releasing your “baggage”? Are you committed to change? A surefire way to help you do this is to find your purpose and to realize you are here on this earth for a reason!
  4. Look For Lessons. What have you learned from your past?  Was it the need for you to create boundaries? For you to temper your expectations? For you to learn to speak up? There is usually a lesson in everything. 
  5. Look Around You. Are you surrounding yourself with positive influences? Our quality of life is in direct correlation to who we hang out with.  Jim Rohn was spot on when he said that “we are the average of the five people we spend the most time with.”
  6. Look at Possibilities. When you release your baggage you will have a better outlook on life.  You will grow personally.  Doors will be open to new things for you!  
  7. Look Outward. Bringing value to others is an antidote to releasing the “baggage” of our past. Find something greater than you that you can serve and then serve it well!  
Our quality of life is in direct correlation to who we hang out with. Jim Rohn was spot on when he said that “we are the average of the five people we spend the most time with.”Click To Tweet

Your past is part of your unique story-don’t be ashamed of it. Your past is just that-your past-and it holds no power over you. Don’t lose your present to your past.  Forgive yourself about what has happened. By doing this you will create space in your heart for beautiful things. And you, my Friend, are meant to be a part of many, many beautiful things. 

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