September 11, 2014

How to Separate our Past from our Future




Why Doesn’t our Past Have to Affect our Future?

Our past does not have to affect our future for these reasons:

· Throughout the years, many people have shown that it is possible to move beyond severely dysfunctional lives. Therefore, we have “scientific” proof that it can be done. The turbulent, disadvantaged, childhood of some celebrities is well known. For example, Dolly Parton and Naomi Judd are two American Country music superstars who were born into underprivileged families in the mountains of Appalachia.

·  Every day offers us a fresh start. If we feel that our past was unsatisfactory, we can try to find the strength and resources to improve our future. Obviously, this won’t happen overnight in many cases. Some trauma takes years, or even decades, to overcome. However, most people will have the capacity to build a better life, little by little, if they are willing to work hard.

What Well-Known People Have Moved Beyond Their Past?

I’m sure that the list of famous survivors, past and present, could fill volumes of books. However, in my book, Accept No Trash Talk, I mention a few inspiring people:

· Theodore Roosevelt overcame childhood medical problems to develop into the 26th President of the United States.

· Helen Keller was struck with what is widely presumed to be Scarlet Fever as a toddler. The disease left her deaf and blind. However, she conquered her challenges to grow into a successful American author, political activist, and lecturer.

· Jackie Robinson was the first African-American to be allowed into all-white Major League Baseball. He played for the Brooklyn Dodgers. He played in six World Series games and six All-Star games.

· “Colonel” Harland Sanders became the legendary founder of fast-food giant, Kentucky Fried Chicken, after a lifetime of failed businesses and failed careers.

· Andrew Carnegie moved past an impoverished younger life in Scotland to develop into the undisputed leader in the United States steel industry during the late 19th century.

All of these survivors moved beyond stereotypes, financial crises, and physical restrictions to accomplish amazing feats in sports, politics, writing, and manufacturing—among other things.

How Can we Move Beyond our Past?

We can move past our past by believing in ourselves and being a part of a supportive group that believes in us. That group may be our family, our friends, our co-workers, or people with whom we share a similar faith. Research has shown that people who are suffering are more likely to improve if they are supported by a caring network of friends and family.

How have you moved beyond your past?