If you could travel back in time and change your past… would you?
Knowing all the things you know now… would you?
Recently I’ve been torturing myself with this question. If I could go back in time, what would I change? How would I redo everything? But if I did… would I even have some of the things and memories I love now?
It’s a ridiculous thing that we do to ourselves, mulling over our past as if we thought enough about it we could somehow will ourselves back there. We like to play a fun game of asking each other, “If you could go back in time…”. It’s a game that always ends up driving us insane the more we think about it. It’s easy to sit back and look at the situations that have passed and see what we should or shouldn’t have done. We want to scream at our past selves sometimes.
Ugh, why do we do this to ourselves?
Why am I thinking so much about the past? Looking back at my past doesn’t help my. I don’t get ahead by wishing I wouldn’t have been so insecure and self loathing. Of course it would have been better to figure out who I was and gain confidence earlier on. Of course I wish that I didn’t have these painful and traumatic events in my past. Of course I wish I could go back and invest money and be a millionaire by now, but that’s just not realistic. What is realistic is that the past is set in stone, there’s no going back, no redos. The only thing to do is to move forward. And honestly, I can say that I really don’t know if I could change things if I had the ability to. I am who I am today because of the past, the good, bad and worse. The decisions I made and others made that affected me are things I have learned from, grown from.
What bothers me is that we get so stuck in the past, thinking about how we’d do the past differently instead of looking at it and using those lessons to deal with our present and future. We get so blinded by hindsight that we forget about being productive right now. The only reason we should be looking back into our past is to see what we can use from it to empower ourselves today. How can I use my past experiences to become the best version of myself today? We should look at our past and appreciate that road we’ve just walked down. Even if our past is as recent as five minutes ago… it’s in the past. We have an opportunity to change ourselves today, right now. We have an opportunity to let our past be our past, part of what has made us who we are, but not let it define who we are. But even the good memories can keep us from moving forward. We can get stuck in the how good things used to be and keep us from seeing how good things are right now or how we can make right now good.
If you could travel back in time and change your past… would you? Does it even matter now?