Life asks us to focus on the present, but yet so many seem determined to do anything but that.
I often hear from others or culture that what happened before has ruined their lives. Or that the future is going to be terrible, and so we should prepare for an uncertain future. It seems to me that the future is pretty much going the same as the past. People will do what they believe is in their best interests, and mistakes as always will be made.
For example, in a past post I shared about a woman who felt she was ruined by a past relationship. I think she called herself spoiled goods. I wonder why we have this attitude? If you really are worthless, then why meet people and date? I think that it is difficult for people to accept the positive things in their life unless they have someone who isn’t living their life share it with them.
We accept our reality as the baseline for everything else. So we don’t realize the benefits and limitations of our beliefs. What I have learned in my life, is that what I used to believe that seemed so unassailable by logic, was really just what I had absorbed from culture. You don’t really get outside your culture unless you travel, meditate, or really are wise intrapersonaly. You know whats going on inside of you, and you focus on that and start to discover the inconsistencies.
One of the first inconsistencies I discovered in my life was the difference between what I wanted to do, and what I did. It mystified me why I knew what I should do, yet I was unable to do it. I was taught that with your willpower you could do anything, and indeed you can do a great many things, but other forces play a part as well. I have since learned that many things influenced my behavior without realizing it consciously, and that in making peace with those things, I don’t have the brake and gas applied metaphorically in my life.
This is not to excuse or justify myself for my actions. I have no problem being responsible for what I have done. However, it does seem prudent that if we are kind with others, we should also be kind to ourselves. Perhaps we didn’t do what we could have done, but we also haven’t done what we could do and that is just as important. We may have forgotten a friend’s birthday, but we also didn’t get mad at a friend for forgetting our birthday. Things have a way of coming around.
The point of this is to show and share that we all sometimes feel tempted to live in the past or the future, but happiness is in focusing on the moment.