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Letting go of the past can seem to be impossibile. Especially if you are still suffering from social anxiety. Since you are still struggling in the present, how the hell can you let go of the past?!
To be honest, I couldn’t do it. For a long, long time.
I was still very worried about what others were thinking of me. I believed that all my embarrassing moments were still on the forefront of the minds of all the people involved. All the stupid stuff I said and did.
I was convinced that they would blurt out one of my embarrassing moments at any time. I also thought that people always looked at me in a funny way, judging me. How can I be letting go of the past if the same people are still around me?
Most people are too concerned with themselves to be judging you.
They are more busy about how they are coming across, or how well they are enjoying themselves, than to be busy worrying about you! Most people have probably forgotten about your embarrassing moments…
You on the other hand, you do remember it. Because for you it was an emotionally charged experience.
The human brain works in a way that it only stores information that makes impact in our lives. Only emotionally charged experiences get stored. These things get registered, others not.
Not convinced? OK, let me give an example.
Can you think of what you ate for dinner exactly one month ago?
Unless you heavily journal about your eating habits, you can’t remember this. That is because it didn’t emotionally impact you.
Your mind can simply not remember everything. So it makes a selection on what it will remember. It does this by only storing peak- and negative experiences
The truth is,
Most people have forgotten about most of your embarrassing moments!
It was fun for them at the time, but it didn’t make such an emotional impact on them that they remembered it forever…
So, people don’t care about you issues all that much!
I hate to be the one telling you this, but you’re not the most important person in everyone’s life! People kinda have this thingy with them being the most important person in their lives…
Besides, what other people think of you is none of your business. It’s their business. You know yourself better than other people because you spend the most time with yourself.
The above thinking helped me quite a bit. It was a good shift in my mind for letting go of the past.
But, I want to give you some more strategies and ways of thinking that will assist you in letting go of the past. Because once you do this, you can start fresh and will be much more effective and productive in overcoming your social anxiety.
The only thing that you can do about your past is worrying about it. And that’s not going to help you much, is it?
I had so much trouble letting go of the past because I just couldn’t accept that I had social anxiety. I was extremely ashamed of it. I was deeply unhappy because people knew it. It was just that obvious.
Once I finally accepted that I couldn’t change that anymore, I was able to go forward.
I actually felt motivated to become better because I had suffered social anxiety!
When you accept that the past is behind you, and that it never comes back, you can move forward.
We must be willing to let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the life that is waiting for us.
If it’s appropriate, confess. Explain yourself and share your feelings. Be mature and do the above, if you have to. People will respect it, and you can move on.
Given the knowledge, emotions and skills you had, this was the best thing you could do. If you knew better at that specific moment in time, you would have acted otherwise. You simply couldn’t do anything differently because that’s who you were and that’s the best that you knew back then.
Forgiveness of others does not mean that you are OK with how they behaved, you just forgive them. They did what they could do, given their emotions, skills and knowledge of how the world worked. If you forgive them, YOUheal because of this.
I can freely talk about how messed up I was. How much of a fool I have made of myself. What lame things I did and what a sucker I was. This is because I accept that I was like that.
That was the old version of me. It’s still part of me, and I accept that, but I have forgiven myself for it. I couldn’t be and do otherwise at the time. So now, I am still the same person, but an updated version. And you can be too.
Be a new you. Do things you haven’t done before. Explore, investigate and conquer. Letting go of the past is moving forward from the moment you decide to start fresh.
Stand up and walk out of your history.
When you are letting go of the past you are leaving your emotional prison behind.
You will have fewer worries and will be more peaceful. This will give you energy that you can use to go for the live that you really want. Regardless of what happened in the past…
If you want to completely overcome your social anxiety disorder, getting coached by me personally (from the comfort of your own home and the ease of sitting behind your PC) have a look at the specifics of my 1 on 1 Skype coaching package Social Anxiety Coaching
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