Why Dwelling On The Past Can Hinder Your Future (Plus Tips On Ways To Heal)

About a few weeks ago, I found myself emotionally triggered by a song I was listening to while cleaning. Those who know me know that I cannot deal with an unkempt home. I find myself cleaning every single day, multiple times of the day. I favor listening to jazz or soft beach sounds while tidying up, but on this particular day, I wanted to listen to something that could help push me through cleaning. I found a playlist full of throwbacks, pressed play, and carried on with my cleaning.

Mary J. Blige’s “Real Love” came on and my broom immediately turned into a mic. I was singing my heart out until a memory that I thought was hidden way deep inside the back of my mind came forth.

We, my mother, little brother, older sister, close family friend, and I were on our way to visit some family out of town. The weather was warm and the sky was a beautiful shade of blue with little, wispy clouds floating peacefully. I was sitting in the backseat of the car with my brother and mother minding my business when “Real Love” by Mary J. Blige came on the radio. I perked up a bit because that was my jam. Out of nowhere, there was a comment made that sent me into a state of deep sadness. The comment was:

“I wish I would’ve stopped having kids after the second one.”

I was crushed. That was not the first time that sort of comment was made and to hear it AGAIN by the SAME PERSON solidified, for me, how she truly felt. At the moment, I gave up all hope that anyone was ever going to want or love me the way I desired to be loved and wanted. I could not bring myself to enjoy the rest of that day. I could not stand to look at her in the face after such a comment she had made. After spending the majority of the evening out of town, we journeyed back home where she acted as if everything was fine.

I finished sweeping and slowly made my way to the couch. Immediately, tears began to fall from my eyes. I allowed them to drip slowly down my face and into my lap. I sat on the couch for a solid ten minutes bawling my eyes out. Once calm, I grabbed my journal and documented my feelings at that moment. I wrote until a sense of peace swept over me. The very next day, I said to myself, “I need to cleanse myself mentally and emotionally. I am tired of being triggered!”

A lot of the time, we hold ourselves back from the wonderful future ahead just by holding on to past mistakes and pains. I have a habit of whenever something painful happens to me, I hold on to it for dear life. Like, it is hard for me to let it go. In the story I shared above, I thought I was over that comment that was made, but obviously, I wasn’t. My mind associated that song with that memory so that every single time I would hear that song, that memory would play in my mind. What I’ve come to realize is that when you’re holding on to what happened to you in the past, that does nothing, but hold you back from progressing in life. Dwelling on the past only hinders the success of the present and future. Which is why we need to learn to let go and forgive.

“When your mind is healthy and free of past mistakes and pains, your outlook on life and situations will be healthy as well.”

-Nieshia of Armored With Faith

I view the month of March as the time of growth and renewal. I am dedicating this entire month to forgiveness and creating and maintaining a healthy mindset. So, guess what I did? I created three tips for those of you who, like myself, desire to let go of past hurts and mistakes. I pray that the advice that I share with you will help you to forgive yourself and others, all while clearing up space in your mind for productivity, love, and positivity. When your thoughts are healthy and free of past mistakes and pains, your outlook on life and situations will be healthy as well.

Throughout this month, I am going to be sharing with you guys some resources that will aid you in your journey of forgiveness, healing, and growth. Also, I will share my personal thoughts and feelings on my journey of forgiveness and healing.

So, join me on this journey of cleansing, forgiveness, learning, and renewal!!!


Study & Apply What The Bible Says About Forgiveness! Reading the Bible is essential. Focus on reading stories on the topic of forgiveness and why it’s important to do so. The Bible speaks of forgiveness numerous times. That should tell you something! Forgiveness is IMPORTANT!! I would prefer if you sat down to read a physical Bible, but if listening to it is a better option for you, that is fine. The “Youversion” Bible app is a great tool for that.

Confront Those Who Hurt You! This tip probably sent a lot of you into panic mode (trust me, I know exactly how you feel). If you desire to get it off of your chest, set up a meeting with said person and let them know how you feel. If they apologize, great! If they don’t, forgive them and MOVE ON! If you do not feel comfortable sitting in front of the person that hurt you, write them a letter letting them know how you feel. If none of those options are feasible, pray about it, forgive them, and MOVE ON!!

Write! Journaling is a great way to clear your mind. Write about any and everything that comes to your mind. Triumphs, setbacks, thoughts, and feelings, document those things. Something I would like for you to do is at the start of your day, write down what you are thankful for. Starting the day off on a good note sets the tone for the remainder of the day. At the end of the night, release the thoughts running wild in your mind onto paper. Go to bed with a clear mind!

If you found these tips to be helpful, I want to hear about it!! Send me an email or comment down below.

Book I Will Be Reading Throughout This Month:

“Emotional Detox: 7 Steps To Release Toxicity And Energize Joy” by Sherianna Boyle

Bible Verses To Study:

  • Colossians 3:13
  • Matthew 6:14-15
  • Ephesians 4:31-32
  • Matthew 6:9-15

These aren’t the only Bible verses that you can read. If you know of more, read those as well. Share them with me in the comment section below!!

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