When the Past Keeps Haunting You

Usually what happens when we have those unwanted, intrusive, misery-inducing thoughts, is that we are trying to suppress something that is clearly there and trying to express itself. Suppression and repression only feed negative thoughts more energy. Distraction and escape just keep them bubbling under the surface. Engaging with those thoughts feeds them too. So what the heck are we supposed to do?!

The key to freeing ourselves from a dark past is by shining an even brighter light. We can’t force ourselves to avoid or ignore painful memories from our past. If we deny our pain or delude ourselves, it will create more problems down the road. 

To fully heal, we have to look at our pain. We have to explore it from all sides. We need to meditate on it and reflect on it until it no longer stirs up any troubling emotions. Only when we’ve mustered up the courage to face it, can we conquer it. Once we have conquered it, we can set it down. If it pops up again, which it might, it will no longer disturb us.

When we make decisions that we later regret, they can end up haunting us for the rest of our lives. Our mind becomes consumed with thoughts like, “What if…,” “If only I had…,” and, “I wish…” In my latest podcast, I go into detail about how we can leave our past in the past, accept this moment, and make a brighter future. 


Here’s What I Want You to Do This Week:

  1. Set aside some time to just focus on, and think about, something that keeps popping up in your mind. Sit with whatever is weighing on your mind. Give it some unhurried, undivided attention.Try to find something that you can accept, and make peace with, about the situation.

  2. Find a lesson in the situation. Remember, a mistake is not a mistake if you learn from it. If we can find some lesson, if any good can from it, and if we can understand the root causes, then we can start to forgive, find gratitude, and turn that painful past into a blessing. (Watch this video to understand why there are no wrong decisions in life.)


Don’t try to hurry this process. Some days will be easy, and then the next day might be hard. Love both. And make sure you do it every single day until the past is no longer troubling. Remember that you can love your mistakes, you can love your past self, and you can be grateful for the lessons and strength you gain along the way. 

Don’t forget to continue the Week 1 task as well — creating mindfulness reminders around the house and office. It can be a reminder on your phone, a sticky note, or a lipstick smiley face on the bathroom mirror. Anything that reminds you to check in with your thoughts. Remember, we can’t undo decades of habitual thinking in a few days, so keep it up and great work!

Much love,


PS – Why is it important to stop and smell the roses? And how can you do that? I answer these questions in my video here.

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You Are This Moment

It doesn’t matter what happened yesterday. It doesn’t matter what will happen tomorrow. We are not our mistakes, nor are we our successes. We are this one, eternal, priceless moment.