Spinning in the past

Jun 23, 2023

In your life after loss, you find yourself living in the past. You revisit the memories, the plans you made, and the day-to-day little things that now seem more like big things.

You spiral in the could have’s and should have’s, wondering what you might have done differently to change the outcome.

It’s a spin cycle of suffering.

But there is a way out. It starts with understanding your brain a little better.

You see, your brain is clinging to a time when your person was physically present, which is literally how your brain understands the world. It makes sense.

Also, your brain prefers to live in the past, which is safe and familiar, as opposed to existing in this foreign, surreal, and extremely painful new reality.

For these and other reasons, your brain is offering you thoughts based in the past. Nothing has gone wrong, but you may want to learn to live in the present moment more often, and you may even want to think about the future.

The privilege unique to us humans is the ability to direct our own thoughts. To think thoughts on purpose, that are true and useful.

To reconcile the past and orient yourself to the present moment, try these thoughts:

  • I can’t change the past by reanalyzing it.
  • The past cannot be renegotiated.
  • I did what I knew to do, given the information I had at the time.
  • This is what I’ve got today.

And a favorite of mine is, “This is the part when….” It will help you get in sync with the reality that is unfolding today.

This is the part when…… I take the car to the shop.

This is the part when….. I go to a wedding alone.

This is the part when…..I feel lonely.

Understanding ourselves better and directing our own thoughts is what we do inside of Life Reconstructed, my coaching program exclusively for widowed people. It’s for you if you’re ready to try something new to take bigger strides in your healing, and feel better sooner, all on your terms and on your timeline. Click below to learn more. 


Learn more about Life Reconstructed.

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