It never ceases to amaze me how we continue to punish ourselves and hold onto resentments for things which have happened in the past. We carry these bad feelings around with us like painful baggage for years and years and often deny ourselves the life we truly deserve to live as deep down, we feel like ‘bad’ people and that we don’ t deserve good things. I often see this in my coaching sessions – if someone is having the same old patterns appearing in their lives over and over again, or if they are continually not taking the correct action in order to achieve a goal, it is often because they have a pile of ‘uncompleted’ tasks or that deep down they don’t believe they deserve any better.
Sometimes, we need to clean the slate of our past in order to let in a fantastic new future. It’s just like planting a new garden – you have to remove some of the debris, stones and old weeds. We have all heard the phrase ‘you have to get rid of the old to make room for the new’.
Closure and forgiving yourself for past events is very important and if you are willing to look deeply into your past and bring closure to some of these things, it will be much easier to move forward into the future. It helps us build a solid new foundation to create the life we truly want to live. We cannot really create the wonderful new life we desire on a past which is filled with incomplete tasks, painful relationships, broken agreements and unresolved issues.
If we don’t clean up our past and make peace with it, we may develop addictions; drama and upset in order to avoid the painful feelings. This can then cause emotions such as hopelessness, sarcasm, cynicism, loneliness, or emptiness.
For us to have a breakthrough, and open up to the possibility of a wonderful new future, we must first look to our past and be willing to uncover the ways we may have deceived or disappointed ourselves and others. We must take a look into how we have sabotaged ourselves and own up to it all! We must look at all the unresolved wounds that we are still dragging around with us from the past and be willing to let them go.
Sometimes we get so attached to what happened in the past that we really don’t want to let it go. Perhaps it is because we have longed for some resolution, an apology or a different outcome. And so, instead of letting go and moving on, we choose to hold onto our pain, our grudges as we don’t want to give up on what we believe we are owed to us. However, the problem with t his approach is that if we need someone else to do something before we have closure, there is a good chance that we will never get it!
( And we are giving this person the power to rule our lives).
We actually cannot count on someone else to give us the closure that we need. We must give this to ourselves. If we are to be 100% responsible for our own life, we must find a way of giving this closure to ourselves so that we can move on. The closure process supports us in healing our past and making peace with ourselves. Closure gives us freedom!
Holding onto your past is like collecting news paper articles from 10, 20,30, years ago and carrying them with you wherever you go. Would you choose to read these newspapers every day going over each upsetting story in your head over and over again? Would you carry these papers with you from job to job, relationship to relationship? Would you repeat the stories in these newspapers to your friends over and over again?
To move forward, we must recognise what we are carrying around with us and make a commitment to finding closure.
If we don’t bring closure to our hurts, resentments, regret or guilt, we can be certain that what is unfinished from the past will arrive in our future and destroy our plans for a wonderful future. If we keep hold of negative emotions we become stuck in the old negative energy and will be unconsciously attracted to situations and people which mirror our past bringing up the same patterns over and over again. It is only when we free ourselves of this negative energy that we can move forward!
Make a list today of all the unresolved projects, tasks and relationship which are keeping you tied to the past. Identify the actions you will need to take to bring closure to each one of them. Even if it is not possible for you to make contact with the person concerned – write it down anyway! Imagine how great it will feel to have a clean slate!
Article written by Lisa Phillips
- The Importance of Closure (datewithcleo.wordpress.com)