Monday, July 8, 2013

History Repeats? Move on to Your Next Adventure

Have you ever faced a challenge, a conflict, or some other difficult situation in the present that already feels very familiar to you...almost as if you've encountered it in some other form before? Perhaps in your past...

You might have wondered why this type of situation keeps returning for you. Maybe it's a work-related challenge, a tiff with a friend or family member, or a personal obstacle such as passing a test or reaching a goal or dream. Whatever the case, you may wonder, "How do I keep attracting reflections of my past?" Your new challenge may mimic your past one so closely, that it seems beyond coincidence. How do you face what's in front of your eyes without precisely reenacting the events that came before it?

We've all heard the phrase "History repeats itself." It's true that when you're faced with a challenge in the present that resembles one from your past, that there is a chance of history repeating itself. Your mind may even convince you that you'll inevitably meet the same fate as you did before. On top of that, the conclusion from your past may have been disappointing or upsetting, leading you to believe that the new situation will end in disappointment too. What do you do with this echo from the past?

Don't worry---you don't need a time machine to travel back to the past and correct things in order to meet your present challenge. Your new situation can be a gem in that it presents a new learning opportunity to help you grow and expand your horizons. How? Life tends to present us with challenges that are familiar to us as an opportunity to try it again. Life doesn't always expect you to get it all right the first time. It is how you take advantage of these refreshed opportunities that makes all the difference.

The next time you're faced with a challenge that closely resembles one from your past, remember that you've been living life in between these two events. You're the same person, but you're also an individual who has life experience with which to learn and grow from. How are you going to use what you learned in the interim to face what you're going through now?

Next, don't get caught up in chastising yourself for the decisions you made in the past. If there is a major contributor to history in fact repeating itself, it closely involves this unhelpful mindset. Trust yourself enough to recognize that had you known then what you know now, you may have done it differently---or might not have. The point is, it's impossible to know and it doesn't matter right now for your current situation. Given what you've been through so far, how will you handle things today?

Finally, try to be honest with yourself and admit that repeating circumstances have kept presenting themselves over and over again to you. What are they asking you to pay attention to, work on, or move on from? Try and detect where these challenges are trying to nudge your future, so that history doesn't have to repeat itself any longer.

Just as there is an innate intelligence to your body and your health, there is also an intelligence in the challenges that you face. Instead of posting a label on your forehead that reads "History Repeats Itself," tear that label off and try something new. If you get in touch with your individual experience and insight, your growth, and the unique lessons you've learned, these clues will lead you in the right direction more than a page-by-page reading of your history and past will.

This week, ask yourself, how can you derail history from repeating itself---so that you can move on to your new and excellent adventure?

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