Feeling anxious from past experiences? - Remember these 7 points
Without going into great detail, I want to tell you about this experience. Don’t worry its not traumatic or disturbing – although it did disturb me for a while. Before I tell you about this incident that disturbed me, I want to ask you a question – “Have you really moved on or have you pretended to move on, all the while still disturbed by it?”
Take your time to answer, no rush. But I only ask that you stay faithful to yourself when you ask yourself this question.
Let me help you narrow it down -
If you have more than one incident or unable to pinpoint, here’s what you can do – Close your eyes, take a deep breath and allow your mind to wander, whatever incident that was too strong and had an impact will surface and your mind will take you there.
Neat trick, right? Okay so, you have your incident, now ask yourself – “How do I feel about this right now?” Very honestly make a note of your response.
If you feel neutral or don’t have any intense feelings then perhaps, you’re good and have moved on from that incident but if your response is too intense or if you still have feelings that are – let’s say for lack of a better word – ‘negative’ then odds are you’re still stuck in that moment.
Now hold on to that and let me take you to my experience.
It was a lazy noon. I was alone at home and this noon was warm and comfortable. You know those long afternoons where the entire world seems to have paused and there’s a comfortable silence? Yea, it was that kind of a noon. Perfect for a nap or tuck in with a good book. I Chose the latter.
So, there I was tucked in with a good book, feeling relaxed and honestly, I felt as if nothing in the world could disturb me. A few pages in and I came across something that was otherwise perfectly normal but was very unsettling for me. This incident which was being described in the book was very similar to an incident that I had been through. It happens, sometimes some things are so universal and yet, they feel oddly personal. This was such an episode. An unsettling experience from reading a fiction book.
I tried to read further but somehow my eyes and mind were stuck in that familiar incident, not because it was so familiar, I understand how that works, but because I thought I had moved on from it.
I closed my eyes and there it was, a replay of that incident, still so fresh in my mind. My warm comfortable afternoon turned into a dark disturbing phase. To make things worse it started playing in my mind on a loop every time I closed my eyes. I thought I was over it. I really did. Then why was it bothering me so much?
Well, the answer was fairly simple – I wasn’t! I had convinced myself that I had moved on.
Obviously, I didn’t want to stay stuck there but I also knew I couldn’t push it down and suppress it any further. I had to deal with it. I had to face it, deal with the guilt and embarrassment that I felt each time I thought about it.
Seeing as there was no way out, I decided to deal with it in the way I possibly knew and a way I’m going to share with you too.
But before I delve into it, I should tell you that trying this method didn’t completely help me let go and move on in that moment. I had to repeatedly practice it, each time this incident came into my mind. With each repetition the intensity reduced and I felt lighter toward that incident. Unfortunately, I can’t tell you how long that may take, a few weeks, months, years…
Even today when it surfaces, I touch the feeling of guilt and embarrassment but it no longer overwhelms me or overpowers me.
Here’s what you need to do –
Sit comfortably and close your eyes. Very gently go to that incident. Let it play. If you experience any anxiety focus on your breath, deepen it if it helps. Slowly and gently, let the incident play in your mind. Allow the emotions and feelings to surface in your present. See through the entire incident, start to finish. Yes, it will make you feel uncomfortable and will disturb you but try to see the full incident anyway. After it’s done, don’t get up just yet. Take deep breaths, minimum of 3, maximum of how many ever times you want or till you feel comfortable again. With every exhale allow the emotions of that incident leave your body, say this if it helps – ‘I allow this incident to leave my body’. If you feel like crying, don’t hold back. In a journal, note your response.
This is what I did on that warm comfortable afternoon that turned dark and uncomfortable. I practiced at least 10 deep breaths till I felt light again. And yes, I went on to read my book and after a few minutes I was back to enjoying my warm comfortable noon.
You know I understand, every incident Is different and our minds may not be able to completely erase it but our bodies go through the emotions each time. And therefore, it makes sense that we let these emotions leave our body. Breathing combined with the visualization helps in calming down our nerves. And the feelings we feel so intensely, tend to neutralize their effect on our bodies.
This practice requires a lot of patience and some love but it helps.
A few nuggets of wisdom that might help you in order to feel at ease about the past experiences –
- You are not the same person –
You’ve certainly improved and become a better version since that last incident of/from your past. You are not the same person, so try to see the past with a fresh perspective and with the ‘present’ you rather than the ‘past’ you.
- You’ve made progress since then –
Your beliefs and thoughts and mindset has definitely made so much progress. You are a lot more confident and aware in your mind and body today than you were when this incident occurred. Embrace the change, accept the change and you’ll feel a slight comfort from this incident too.
- You need to forgive yourself now –
It doesn’t matter if you were wronged or if you wronged someone. This incident is now in the past and it maybe a good time for bygones. Forgive yourself for all that you had to go through and for all that you put yourself through. It may not be easy but it’s certainly necessary to help you move on.
- Your past doesn’t define you –
Even if it feels that way today due to the impact it has on you, it certainly doesn’t define you. You have the power to change your story and start fresh. Keeping this in mind will allow you to move on from that troubling past.
- Moving on is a (your) choice –
Believe me it really is. You simply need to make this choice, this decision to move on and you’ll find a way to do just that. It may take time for you to reach to the other side but just a choice to walk away, will bear fruit.
- Don’t stop living your present –
I know you’re still affected by your past and things seem really stressful but don’t stop yourself from living your present moment. Go party, date, dance, laugh do all that makes you happy and at the same time try to work on your past too. The present is a lot more important than your past is, so don’t miss it.
- Make dreams lists about your future –
I think it’s important to continue dreaming, no matter what. It’s hard to dream when a part of you is stuck in this chaotic past but go ahead and motivate yourself to dream and take the step towards those dreams. You certainly deserve it.
To be completely honest with you, it may not be possible to let go of it completely but it’s a good start. It will certainly have a good effect on your feelings, enough that you can try to move on from it. Take it slow and instead to hoping to jump from a to z take it slow and move from a to b and then b to c... take very small steps and you’ll notice yourself unfold.
If you try this practice make sure to be kind and patient with yourself.
If you don’t want to do it all by yourself, consider working with me. I’ve helped a lot of incredible, creative women get better clarity and help them move on from their past and help them get unstuck. Take a look at my coaching program.
This guide is a great start to change your story and it's available for free claim the download soon.