I deal in hope : Carolyn R Scheidies

Blog Past, Present, Future–the value of perspective

At my age, it is easier to look back than forward since we don’t know what the future holds or how much of a future is out there for us. This is especially true if we have health issues.

Yet, how we live today matters. How many times have we seen those who constantly relive events from their past? A person may focus on those years as a high school or college sports hero, unable to move forward into the present. Because these individuals stay stuck in the past, their present is less than their grandiose imaginations. Such individuals may turn to complaints and hopelessness when a glamorized past doesn’t match the present. This may lead to climbing into a drug of forgetfulness, creating even further problems. Working toward a new dream seems too much work—even though doing so would make life in the present and future more satisfying,

Others may be stuck in a time of tragedy. Somehow, they refuse to release past anger, bitterness and fear. Negative memories blind them to the good of their lives today. It blinds them to what they could do to make today different than yesterday. Blinds them from getting the help they need to come to terms and release the past to a better today and tomorrow.

Dreamers live in the future. I’ve known those who claim they been offered a dream job–when they’ve never even applied. If they did apply, they would not be hired because they don’t have the experience or education to do the job. You might think this would impel them to seek the education or experience to equip them for the job they want so badly. Yet often dreamers wish to live in an imaginary future that has no bearing on reality.

Years ago, when I used to both attend and lecture at author’s conferences, I met individuals who shared a book idea. Often, the idea was solid. The next year, these same individuals would be back with a whole new idea. When asked about the prior idea, the result was a shrug and the admission that the idea was never anything but an idea. The next year, the cycle played out all over again. These individuals never did write, never gained experience, never worked at the craft and never had the satisfaction of finishing, much less publishing, a project. Living in the future robs a person of living in the present.

Others who dream, recognize a dream is only as good as efforts today working toward that dream. Dreams do not become reality without effort, and living today to its fullest to make tomorrow’s dream come true. This includes understanding life offers good and bad. Past memories bring joy and sorrow. They help form us into the persons we are today.

Even bad events can shape our tomorrows if we use such situations to propel us in a positive direction. A person who was traumatized may decide to become a mental health care professional to help others deal with similar situations. We also don’t want to forget loved ones who’ve passed on or lose positive memories from yesterday. They should be shared with our families. That is different from wallowing in a bygone past.

Dreams for the future need to become actual goals with plans for reaching that dream, Of course, the dream also needs to be more than an unattainable wish. We have past, present and future. Each has its place, but for a satisfying life. I don’t know about you, but I plan to live each day—today and work toward my goals with an attitude of blessing and gratitude.

(c) 2021 Carolyn R Scheidies
Published in the Kearney Hub 5/24/21

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