Tips for Letting Go of the Past

Improve your future by letting go of your past. 

If there’s something from your past that is holding you back, it’s important to let it go. Letting go does not mean erasing the past or discarding the lessons you learned. But it does mean that you must build a bridge to the future that allows you to flourish. Here are six tips for letting go of whatever is holding you back.

1. Discard the debris.

Emotional connections are often triggered by material things. So it makes sense to discard the material debris associated with the problematic event from your past. If the bad memory is a broken relationship, throw away all photos of the individual and all items that remind you of the person. If the past problem is a failed business, put everything connected with that company in boxes and throw them into the garbage (or store them a dark corner of your basement).

2. Rewrite the past.

In addition to disposing of old debris, you may need to discard old interpretations of the past. Perhaps you were abused in a relationship and learned to think of yourself as a powerless victim. You could revise that interpretation to perceive yourself as a survivor who did what was possible in the circumstances to ensure that you survived. And your survival at that time means that you are now able to move forward into a brighter future.

3. Build a bridge to the future.