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Linda Ocejo, MA, CPRP, CLC
 
 
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Past, Present, and Future...

It appears to me that many people hold onto the past where it can become a negative influence on their present and future lives.... It also should be understood that our memories are not perfect in anyway, and many times when we think we are remembering the past, we are actually remembering some "version of the past," our particular version of the past. Even when someone is not trying to "sugar coat," or relay mistruths pertaining to the past, our memory does not usually allow us to accurately recall every aspect of our past correctly, and actually "how it was."

It is my belief that people hold unto the past for a variety of reasons. Many times, holding onto our "perceived pasts" temporarily takes us away from the current pressures of life; family problems, marital problems, financial problems, health problems, and work problems, etc. We tend to attempt to bring ourselves to a "better place/time," so to speak. However, it is actually our "perceived better place/time," and not actually the reality.

We must all remember that the human being generally sorts out what is going to be remembered. If we are looking to the past for comfort and for an escape from the pressures of our current reality, of course, it is going to be sugar coated, so to speak. It wouldn't make sense to utilize the past to comfort us, if we remembered/created a less than perfect past, and one filled with trials and tribulations. We are going to create a problem free past filled with good times and free of problems and negativity. However, let's face it, this is not the reality of the past.

Many times adults look to their childhood as an escape from the problems that they are going through today. However, needless to say, many times, the utopian childhood remembered, is not actually the childhood experienced. The human being's memory does not work that way. If we are looking to make ourselves feel better, and to escape the present hardship and problems of life, we are certainly not going to remember a less than perfect childhood.

The truly important thing is that we should not be living in the past. Having and sharing pleasant memories of the past, of course, is very positive for us. Nonetheless, using the past to forget the present, and keeping us from actually living as well as we could be in the present, is definitely harmful to our well being, and for those around us. The past should be put in the proper perspective, and it should not be used negatively to keep us from living the best life that we can be living in the present.

We should all deal with our current/present reality. Please remember that we actually make much of our reality. If we are the type of individual that looks to escape our current reality by creating and living in "our utopian past," we are actually going to cause ourselves and our families to live in a "lesser Present," which will obviously negatively influence our Future.

The human experience is truly a wonderful one.... We should cherish all of the aspects of our lives. Our past should be looked at for what it actually was, and we should treasure the special memories of the past. However, we should definitely move on to our present reality. After all, the present is where all of those that we love and care about now reside. We should cherish the present, work towards making it the best present reality as possible, and look toward a healthy and happy future.

As we all know, or at least we all should know, life is extremely short, and it goes by so very quickly. Enjoy each and every day NOW, IN THE PRESENT, and please do not waste precious time living in the past--our "created past," or "actual past." Life is just too short to do so.... Face the problems of today, find ways to solve them, or to deal with them in a positive manner. You'll find that if you allow yourself to live in the present, you will be living your most positive and fulfilling life, for yourself, and for those very special people currently in your life. "Cherish each day and live it to the fullest."

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