I sometimes write about the challenging and somewhat traumatic childhood I had. Not in detail because they are stories of the past, but they sometimes provide context to my stories and I touch on them. We have all been broken, at least a little bit, somewhere along the line.
The reason I share these personal glimpses into my past, is because they have been one of the greatest gifts I have been given in my life. Yes: they were sad, hard, and difficult to navigate, especially as an adult. But they gave me insight, depth, tools and compassion that I would not have garnered elsewhere.
You cannot pay for this kind for education. It’s experiential only.
Every day, I have a choice: use what I have experienced and learned, for growth and to rise from those ashes, or not. The choice that I am committed to is clear. I have and will, use every contrasting experience to create a life that is most aligned with my truth and my relationship with nature, this planet and the universe. Because I want to feel happy, and alive, and free.
One of the biggest transformations in my life was literally a 24 hour period of choosing to let go of all the terrible memories and stop reliving the past.
I had been manipulated, berated, punished, and verbally and emotionally abused by my mama and stepfather on a daily basis since I was 4 until I left home at 17. And the few times that I came home to visit. Something that happened less and less as I started to make sense of what had happened. But it doesn’t matter what happened. The only thing that matters is what you do with it. This is where alchemy happens.
In my late teens and early twenties I became a big, walking wound, who carried the pain of her childhood and past experiences like armour. I did this, because I thought that holding onto the past, remembering it and feeling the pain of it, would protect me from experiencing those things again in the future.
I was wrong. Holding on to the memories and the pain only allowed me to continue living out those memories and the pain. Plus, I was adding fuel to fire. By staying focused on all the bad things, I manifested more of the same.
What I realised on that fateful night was that it was not the past was hurting me, but my holding on to the past that was creating my emotional and physical pain. The past has absolutely no power to hurt me. It was me, who was keeping those wounds alive, by choosing to hold on by keeping those memories fresh in my mind, by holding on to that pain in my body, as a fearful armory to protect me from future pain. Of course, it did not work.
What I did that night, was systematically forgive myself for each memory I was holding onto, every shred of pain that I was choosing to hold in my body. Every memory and pain that arose for me, I would forgive myself for holding on to. And then I would accept that what happened, happened and forgive the individual involved in each memory and experience.
These are the 5 easy steps I used let go of terrible memories, and stop reliving the past:
- I realised why I was holding on;
- I forgave myself for holding on;
- I accepted what happened;
- I forgave anyone involved;
- I let go.
It all left my mind and body because I decided for it to. I never revisited those old pains and memories again because I didn’t need to.
The process is simple. But you have to want to do it. And be willing to go through the emotions of it.
I still use those steps, whenever I need to. If I notice a challenging emotion arising that is connected with a memory, I’ll clear it in exactly the same way. Until it’s all gone.
My approach now is for ‘letting go’ to be a daily practice to occur alongside any resistance, anger or annoyance I might feel. I recognise what I feel and why. And then I do whatever I can to change it.
Often it simply means speaking out about what is happening and how it doesn’t sit right for me. Other times it is recognising that I’m just feeling touchy because I’m on my monthly cycle. I change what I can and let go of what I cannot and move on before anything can take up residence in my mind and body. The moment has passed and I move on the next one, freely, unencumbered by the past.
When one of your highest values in life is freedom, you dedicate yourself to ensuring that you truly are free.
I also created a free Releasing Rituals program that might help you let go, too. You can join here.