Experiences change us

11 Aug 2016

There’s a famous quote that says; ‘I can’t go back to yesterday, because I was a different person then’ by Lewis Carroll.

And yet that is exactly what we do. How we react to what happened yesterday isn’t how we will react today. Experiences change us, but we don’t always see the changes, but how we think and feel at any given time, will determine how we get to live our lives.

With any experience comes change. Because we are never the same person as we were and because we’re not the same people it’s difficult emotionally go back to where we were when we were happy or take residence there. The sad reality is that we, by getting stuck in bitter memories, we may permanently live there in our minds.

We relieve and continue to relive experiences from our past. There is no harm in revisiting the past, to take our lessons, learn from our past and then swiftly move on, if just for that purpose, but we must never permanently take residence there.

We can never have emotional freedom to think and feel what we choose with yesterday’s experiences at the forefront. We will also never make any new changes and cannot move forward when our minds are permanently stuck in the past.

Unfortunately, because we feel it’s too difficult, many of us ignore the consequences of living somewhere in our minds that isn’t in the present.

6 Responses to “Experiences change us”

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  1. Randy 11. Aug, 2016 at 12:17 pm #

    Yes, it most certainly does and not always for the better. I’m so accustomed to the negative changes that I don’t often notice when there is actually a positive one.

    People often comment on how much I have changed over the years, but I honestly don’t see it the same way as other people do. I have spent most of my life being afraid of changes considering they weren’t a good thing in the world I grew up in.

    I wasted far too many years wallowing in the pity pot over the things I couldn’t change, rather than just focusing on the things that I could; (my friend likes to tell me that I not only get stuck in a rut, I tend to move in and furnish it!)

    It’s only recently that somehow I have been able to do this more often; and I’m not complaining. This is a very good change, considering how many years I have wasted already just wishing things would change, but not doing much to make it happen.

    It would be like standing in front of a car that has broken down and expecting it to just magically start running. You have to put in the work to fix what you can, to get the car running. Sadly I have watched far too many others do the same thing; and go back out drinking because things didn’t change enough to suit them.

    The reality often is that they didn’t get what they wanted and expected things to just happen, when it doesn’t work that way. Life isn’t always fair and we don’t often get the exact changes we want, so we have to make the best of what we do have rather than focusing on what we don’t!

    • Ilana 11. Aug, 2016 at 2:38 pm #

      I think your last sentence sums up your response nicely Randy and you’re right, we don’t always get the changes we want so we do have to make the best of what we do have, rather than focusing on what we don’t.

      As well as noting that, it’s also worth noting that even though we don’t think we change through some of our experiences, I believe our experiences do shape our existence; we just don’t always see those differences in ourselves as you have pointed out.

      Most of the time we’re not sure how to make the changes we need to make. Lives don’t come with a manual and the help we get doesn’t always help us understand. A lot of what we’re told is textbook talk and that always differs to the practicalities of what we have to deal with.

      I believe life gives us the experiences we’re supposed to have and those experiences will always change us. They can be life changing. It’s how we choose to define how we see those experiences and that’s up to us.

  2. Tim 11. Aug, 2016 at 2:45 pm #

    After I retired; I had a very difficult time pulling away from repetition that became nonexistent. There was a practical reason for this: I was afraid of my new life and losing my identity that took years to create.

    I changed over time and the new me overruled the person I used to be, but that doesn’t mean I don’t have nostalgia for the past.

    • Ilana 11. Aug, 2016 at 2:57 pm #

      Thanks Tim. Yes, repetition is something we do, sometimes because we have no choice, but often it’s because it’s where we are; what we do best. Pulling away from repetition will always bring about uncertainty; particularly because we’re never sure what’s going to be there for us, the other side.

      As long as our characters don’t change; our identities will remain the same, but sometimes our characters have to change. It’s often others who struggle with how we change because they themselves aren’t good with change.

      Change is a good thing. We cannot have spiritual growth without change and without change, we can’t have the life we want; or the life we want to aspire to.

      I’m not sure our identity has to go; just because we choose to change. Sometimes we need to have change; but our identities don’t have to change.

  3. Brad 12. Aug, 2016 at 9:15 am #

    Experience does change us. We all change, it’s an inevitable part of life; sometimes for good sometimes not. But it’s only when we look back and see who we are and where we are, that we can see that change.

    Sometime we also lose who we really are as we change for the wrong reasons and nothing good comes from living that life, I know.

    • Ilana 12. Aug, 2016 at 9:31 am #

      Yes, your last paragraph is so true. I’m not sure changing from good to bad is the best move to make; but there are so many reasons why that does happen. It’s not for me to have an opinion on that.

      All I would say is that because we get one crack at life, I feel it’s important we work on the things that will bring about the better outcomes for us. I think it sad when people have it all and then fall from grace, because they fail to get a grip on their issues.

      Primarily it’s our experiences and issues that change us. Those are the things that change the way we see ourselves, other people and the world. There is never a day go by where I’m not working on something to try to better myself.

      I know I wouldn’t be doing what I’m doing now with my site, if I hadn’t have made positive changes. I believe we all can. Yes, experiences change us, but make those experiences count and try to make them positive.

      Everything starts with us. We choose how we live our lives.

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