In your personal development journey, there may come a point where you might feel that you are not making the level of progress you expected.
It could be due to the fact that you are still holding on to an older version of yourself who's not aligned with the vision you currently have.
You probably have certain ideas of who you are based on your past experiences. But these ideas may not reflect who you really want to be.
You have changed but you still haven't completely let go of the person you used to be. You are still letting your past define you which is holding you from becoming who you are really meant to be.
If you want to grow and evolve, you have to release your old self that you no longer identify with.
The following tips will help you get started down the path of letting go of your old self.
1. Let go of labels.
Just because you used to be a certain way in the past, doesn't mean you have to live with that label forever.
By taking on such labels, you convince yourself that they will define you for the rest of your life.
So you go through your life limiting yourself, assuming you should or shouldn't do certain things because of these labels you gave yourself based on past behaviors and attitudes.
If you believe you can do something, you will do it. But if you believe you can’t, you wouldn't even give it a shot.
You no longer need to identify with such labels because they are connected with your past and so they belong there. You don't need to carry it with you in the present anymore.
2. Don't let anyone shame you for changing.
You probably have some people in your life who always keep reminding you of your shortcomings and past mistakes. These people may have certain opinions about you based on the decisions you took in the past. Or they might be used to you acting a certain way that suits them.
And now that you're evolving, they might try to convince you that change is bad. They may not stand the fact that you are moving on and finding your voice.
But only you know what's best for you. You shouldn't let anyone keep you from being true to yourself.
Tune into your own needs instead of pleasing others. It's your life. You have to live with the consequences of your decisions. The only person's opinion that really matters is your own. Don't let anyone use your past to invalidate your current progress.
3. Adopt a growth mindset.
Having a growth mindset basically means believing that you can enhance your abilities through effort and hard work.
You may think that since you behaved a certain way or made some mistakes in the past, you can't move forward. However, know that you feel stuck because you're allowing those mistakes to define you.
You have a choice to not allow past experiences to hinder your ability to improve your life or take away your privilege to change. Let go of the illusion that you can't move forward.
By constantly thinking about past mistakes, you remain stuck in the same place.
Many people tend to assume they are a product of their circumstances. They make no effort to improve and always attribute their attitudes, behaviors, and actions to their life's circumstances and other people.
Simply believing your character is fixed may serve the purpose of ridding yourself of any responsibility for making changes or creating a better life for yourself.
Instead of wasting your valuable time and energy on self-destructive thoughts, focus on how you can invest in your potential.
You don't have to live in the same place forever. You can build yourself up. You can become better. You can attract better things into your life. This is what the growth mindset is all about.
You will realize there are so many opportunities to be happier and better. There's so much to learn and explore.
4. Remember that the present moment is all you have.
You may be embarrassed about the things you did in the past. That's okay. It happens to the best of us.
We obsess over the things we could have done or should have said. In this process, we end up ignoring the good things happening in the present moment.
It's a complete lose-lose situation. You get nothing out of it except more pain and guilt.
To change how you live your life from now on, you have to look at your past differently.
What has happened has happened. The only thing left to do is to learn from your mistakes.
You don't have to keep reliving the painful memories and preventing yourself from moving on. Come to terms with what has already occurred and view those experiences as opportunities to grow.
By transforming your attitude towards your past, you can transform your current experiences and blossom in the present.
Be more mindful of your thoughts, and behaviors.
Pay attention to what you need to do now.
5. Realize that you have changed.
You probably cringe at the thought of all the poor choices you had made, how badly you used to behave or how ignorant you used to be, and so on.
You are cringing now BECAUSE you have grown.
You have gained more insight into yourself and you know you're wise enough to not make those mistakes again.
So don't let the past memories drag you back.
Take responsibility for your past beliefs or behaviors, and focus on the path in front of you.
Reclaim your confidence and self-belief.
It's also very important to practice self-awareness.
Sometimes, we don't even realize we are beating ourselves up about our past mistakes. We get caught up in self-doubts and keep second-guessing ourselves.
The more self-aware you become, the more quickly you will be able to pull yourself out from "what was I thinking routine" and move on.
By letting go of the person you used to be, you create space for a better version of yourself to flourish.
Take a deep breath and decide right away that you will no longer waste your time ruminating about your past screw-ups. You will no longer be kept in the shackles of unwanted memories.
You will take charge and try to become better.