By Melanie VanderPol-Bailey
Most of us can reflect on past moments in our lives that we are not proud of. Mistakes we made, cruel words we have said, loved ones we have hurt and pain that we have caused others. For many of us the past also holds pain and suffering that we have experienced. Some of us have been harmed, victimized, abused, bullied or exploited. Others have experienced or witnessed unimaginable tragedy. While we cannot change the facts of our past, we do have choices on how we allow the past to affect us.
A natural coping mechanism is to avoid or deny feelings of anger or past hurts. We minimize any emotional harm we may have experienced and often tuck those feelings away. But we do not have to hide the past. We have choices on how we view our memories and how we feel about them. When we begin to explore our memories and feelings about them, new ways of thinking and being become available to us. We may be able to view others in a new way and come alongside the pain in such a way that it decreases its negative hold. Through this internal exploration we may also find forgiveness; for ourselves and even for those who have harmed us.
We begin to change the stories we tell ourselves about these past events. These changes can affect our experience of the past, which then impacts the memory itself. This growing from the inside out has transformational healing possibilities. It takes courage to face emotional pain. Know that you are not alone, there is hope and support is available. Call us today!