The past is important because we learn from it. The past helps us navigate through our present choices in order to evolve our soul. From the minute we hit the ground until we cross over, we're in soul school; it's coursework made possible by the enriching and sometimes challenging conditions we have chosen for our lives. We chart a learning program well before we get here, and this program includes our parents, our gender, and life circumstances that will provide us with the greatest opportunity for personal and spiritual growth.

Where we get into trouble is when we give up our freedom to make new choices based upon the present. Every day is new, no matter how you slice it. The sun comes up in spite of our mistakes or the despair we must face. We are meant to continually move forward, and getting stuck in the past holds us behind. We become prisoners in an incredible universe of opportunity. True empowerment stems from living now, not reacting to now from a mindset of the past or living with worry about what might happen tomorrow, next month, or next year. What can we do every day? No matter what has happened to in the past, today we can begin to paint a positive life on a fresh, new canvas.

Classify the Past

The past is only a collection of our emotions, experiences, and thought patterns that came from living life. As adults, when we feel an emotion, it's often based upon past experience. Something that happens today reminds us of something that happened in the past, and we see today as if it were yesterday (or longer ago). Some life events trigger old emotions. If we are unaware of our triggers, our current experiences are all clouded by the past. When we learn to remember only the good, we are able to live more clearly in the present. When we're always agonizing over the past or worrying about the future, however, we're not fully engaged in life today. The trick is to stay focused on your capabilities to address the present. View your past as a wonderful, robust course in life and stop agonizing over your mistakes or what someone once said.

Examine Your Emotional Carryover

Changing a negative outlook takes discipline. You have to deeply resonate with the idea of what you want in the present moment and accept it as already happening. When you attune to an idea, goal, or state of mind, you want to attract it now, not in the future. This takes a lot of discipline. You have to look closely at yourself.

Do some mental housecleaning to discover if what you are feeling now is coated with dust from the past. If you feel discouraged, shift your thinking to the today setting and stop dredging up all those old, dusty feelings from the last twenty years. Clean out your old feelings about your parents, jobs that no longer matter, or people who let you down. Release those people and circumstances and be free. If you carry so much heaviness, you'll never get your emotional floor properly swept. The past is over. Do yourself a favor and lighten your load. Clean house and empower bright and shiny thinking.

Be Inspired by Everyone

Life has many meanings. As an exchange with others, life isn't just about taking it in. It's mostly about what you give out. Based on my observations of many people who are critically ill yet have fantastic attitudes about sharing themselves with others, I know this is true.

If you visit a pediatric cancer ward, for example, you will see children who are physically challenged beyond words but are still an inspiration to everyone around them. Despite their prognosis, their light shines bright because they are living one day at a time. They seem illuminated. Their expressed hope is what keeps the rest of us going. They are among the most inspirational people on earth. They make everyone stop and think, If life can be good despite the circumstances this child is living in, then why am I holding myself back? I believe part of the purpose of these children is to give the rest of us a wake-up call to change our outlook. If we find ourselves with similar challenges, we, too, can keep everyone else going strong while we test our own abilities to stay in the present moment.

Release Fear and Self-Doubt

I think we are often fearful of believing we can have anything we want. When we look at the world, we see lack, unhappiness, war, starvation, pain, struggle, limitation all around us. We begin to believe in these things, and then we give them power. With the number of people we see every day immersed in awful conditions, it seems nearly impossible to trust that the normal human experience can be one of abundance, joy, peace, fulfillment, health, and ease. We've been told since childhood that "nothing's perfect." Nothing is worse than this type of programming, however, because we're never going to realize our full human potential until we release old negative ideas about what is possible. Life is a beautiful, perfect, glorious miracle. We choose our situations, our families, our painful experiences in order to evolve.

As we observe the full range of human life from despair to triumph, we see the huge opportunities that exist to make changes. Despair challenges our perception of what can be. With fear and self-doubt in our toolkit, our capability to produce change is diminished. In the big picture, life is perfect because it is giving us room to grow. A little bad weather makes us sturdier. We need the rain, and even a cold winter makes us more receptive to springtime. Sure as anything, we are going to grow despite our circumstances. There should be no fear of growth. We should be proud of surviving, overcoming, beating the odds, and not living in fear of more to come. We should especially be proud of not dragging ourselves down, along with those around us, with emotions like fear and self-doubt that do nothing but keep us in the dark.

Consciously Create Your Day

Over the years, I have experimented with ways to release the past and move forward and live life in the present moment. I've noticed that when I start my day without a clear direction in how I choose to think, I don't get the results I want. I used to spend days (and years) chewing on old problems. It took me a long time to learn to establish my expectations of the universe as to how I want my day to unfold. I discovered I would replay those same old issues over and over again, my days were out of focus. So I began to make a supreme effort to move disappointments, losses, and feelings of non-success farther from my mind each day.

Before I get up in the morning, I lie in bed for a few minutes and create my day by using a series of affirmative statements. They are positive, present-moment statements about what is, not what will be. They address some element of my life that needs improvement. They get me to completely identify with the power within that will manifest my circumstances. To manifest means to bring into our immediate experience, to make that which is created by the mind into a tangible or observable reality. The power to manifest is derived from spirit, or the Divine, which pervades every inch of the universe. To achieve this goal of manifestation, I say my affirmative statements with love. I'm grateful to be alive. I'm grateful to be able to choose my learning opportunities. Then I focus on being open to positive change.

I also visualize life being unfolded to me in creative ways and ask the universe to show me its perfection in ways I would not expect. I make a point of saying in ways I would not expect because I think we can better understand the co-creative relationship we have with spirit when we release overly specific intentions and let the power of our thinking return to us in ways that give us feedback on our desires. Because I mentally create my day every morning, I've had new people walk off the street and become my employees because I saw a need for them in our organization. Abundance has arrived in the form of revenue streams I did not expect. When I see myself as a co-creator of the universe each day, I attract great results.

When you release the past, consciously create your day, and possess the mental discipline to think positively, you'll see results. Through constant awareness (aligning with powerful and positive ideas) you'll begin to see a difference in your world. A big part of conscious awareness and living in the present moment is being open to the feedback the environment is providing. Be open to positive change and deeply love life.


Copyright © 2015 by The Goddess Network, Inc. and Charlene M. Proctor, Ph.D. All rights reserved.

The Rev. Dr. Charlene M. Proctor of The Goddess Network is the best-selling author of Let Your Goddess Grow!, The Women's Book of Empowerment, and The Oneness Gospel. A Blessing facilitator and a Minister of Spiritual Peacemaking, she is dedicated to helping awaken individuals from all walks of life to the magnificence of their own Divine gifts. Visit for many books and recordings, and her blog at Click here to buy books.

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