I happen to work for a company that provides English enrichment program to kids. And one of the motivational phrases that we use a lot is this :
"The past doesn't equal the future"
The idea is to implant the notion that whatever failures or shortcomings that we went through in the past will not happen again in the future IF we don't let them to. It's about taking responsibility of our own actions at present for a better future. While I believe this phrase rings true, sometimes i can't help but feel that during certain circumstances or moments in my life, the past is the only thing i can hold onto.
Let's clear a few things up. I am somewhat a typical average 25-year-old male. I work full time as an English teacher. I also "sing" and write for a rock band. And my lyrics have always been heavily associated with feelings that come with adolescence and youth. I'm also into movies, books or anything that involves time-travel or manipulation of time.
There have been a lot of instances where I cling to my adolescence and feelings that i went through in my younger days quite strongly. Sometimes I don't really know why. I'd like to think that maybe it's because the future is simply unpredictable and unstable while the past is a safe place to run to. The past doesn't change and it will not change. All the good memories will still be there no matter what.
Of course there is always the other side of the coin. Scars and painful memories are also not going anywhere. They are right there in one part of our brain just waiting to be recalled. I deliberately choose to simply forget some things from my memory and most of the time it works. You will only remember things you want to remember.
The level of intensity of these memories also dictate how ofen they come up to our consciousness. Some memories are simply too strong to be forgotten and more often than not, they creeped up and made their way into our daily conversations without us noticing. They have become a part of our language.
Childhood dreams, unfulfilled ambitions, bitterness of past relationships are some of the things that somehow have managed to become a part of my language. It's not good nor bad, considering it's never clear how or to what direction these things affect you. Some of my strongest self-motivations stem out from these factors. Other times, they are my biggest obstacles, my biggest hurdles, and worst of all my self-made limitations.
The past represents different things for different people. More than anything, it represents innocence. It's a time when things were simpler, and we were allowed to make mistakes. It reminds us of what kind of person we wanted to become or how things were "supposed" to turn out. Letting go of the past can be daunting. Especially when it has become a part of your language without you realizing it.
Well, that was a rather depressing post. Maybe this video will cheer you up :