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  • Writer's pictureAisha Nazia

Walk beside me, mate! (Past/Present/Future)

Updated: Jul 10, 2020

All of us have a past, that lives with us forever and also becomes a reason to who we are in the present, and what we want to be in the future.

Our past often has many restricted beliefs that we developed eventually over a course of time as a kid and the sad fact that accompanies is that we hold on to those perspectives that were thrown at us as reality for the longest time. The moment we start adulting, and when life just gets started for each of us as an independent individual, if those perspectives are negative, they manifest weirdly within our system as disturbing experiences.

It seems always easy to plan things for the very next day, or week, and it is in fact how we learn the basics of making a solid plan for oneself. But when we think of the future, for most it is confusing, unclear and a little murkier. Especially with the drastic pace at which the world is evolving even tomorrow looks indefinite.

What I have realised over time is that our present is influenced by our past so is our future as well. We often tend to make comparative conclusions about the future just based on our past experiences. In a way it helps, but if those were hard times, it eventually makes human beings pessimistic.

In one of the study reports I read a few months back, a group pf people from different walks of life were asked to plan an event that would either happen in the coming weeks or in few years. Most people ended up setting it in a familiar location that they are aware of, while the one's that worked on a distant future, did not have a preconception of such sorts. Research talks about how we use the same brain processes to remember the past and also plan for the future and imagine different possible scenarios.

Planning has always been an art we are told to master since a small age, starting from planning lessons to learn on a daily basis to everything people call the future. But we were often told to run the fastest in the race, no one really cared of whether we were up for it or not. One true fact is that people who plan for failures with backup options are usually well equipped to handle any uncertainty and are also great when it comes to handling chaos spontaneously.

Daniel Kahneman, a world renowned psychologist in one of his TED Talks shed some light on why our memories and experiences can be so different and sometimes unrelated as well. He is the founder of behavioural economics and also a Nobel Prize Winner.

Unless we as well as our mates do not try to make a conscious connection between our memories and our present life, it just gets difficult to cope up with things sometimes, we wouldn't even realise this struggle for long, until it exhausts us completely.

So walk beside me, mate. No matter how independent one is, there are always people in our life, whom we love, whom we look upto, whom we admire, whom we consider our source of feeling good and with whom we feel like the same skin when it comes to sharing anything and everything.

Memories from childhood or even early adulthood sometimes, shapes the way one thinks, how they develop their school of thoughts, level of interactions with people and also how they portray themselves to others. MEMORY is a slimy topic. Be it our past, present or future, just like how english words in these three tenses are spelt, all are inter linked. What gets us in trouble is the way our brains work, it doesn't record the exact data with all details like an SSD, it just picks what it feels like, I know it is funny but it is so. That too, its programmed to pick based on the feelings we sense within us, the vibes the people, situations and surroundings give us as well.

It is definite and the reality that it's our past that has made us who we are today at the same time I also strongly believe that “everything happens for a reason” and that “every experience is a new lesson learnt”.

I am sure you would have read a lot about life being ten percent of what happens to us and 90 percent of how we choose to handle it. How I hack this is by overwriting some of my past with fresher experiences and also by trying to see what matters than tagging it as good, bad, right or wrong. These four words are very deceptive and I always felt those are a set of adjectives everyone often uses to make excuses.

I manage my space, both physical as well as mental in a very weird fashion, not rare though as I know many who do so. I focus on the aesthetics, peace, vibes, order and cleanliness of everything and everybody. But I am not a compulsive person so I make sure I create such environments for myself and not expect anyone else to do that for me. We are clearly responsible for our lifestyle and daily routines, be it our eating habits, our fitness regimes, our sleep cycle or even stress levels, we should start leaning to help ourselves and that can do wonders.

Being mindful of your surroundings and people you meet helps in bringing purpose to your life. If we aren't on our toes, we might miss opportunities, regret a decision which we ourselves took once and also start feeling lost.

It is often hard to find a lot of people whom we start loving more the better we get to know them, because the more intimately we know someone, the more clearly we’ll see their flaws, but that is the way it is. I have noticed that to be a reason why most modern marriages fail, why friendships break or even partnerships taking a toll. You don't really know someone until you discuss with them sensitive subjects when they are under pressure, hungry, feeling lonely or sometimes living with them.

Future is indefinite, a better word would be, it is always surprising, sometimes works for you sometimes doesn't. No one can ever be completely prepared for one's future but making sure we plan it as much as we can understanding our vulnerabilities and our opportunities always is an aid.

This universe, the nature and the people in here are constantly changing and so is how evolution takes place. We can't always be in our comfort zone and try resisting it, we need to buckle up ourselves to adapt to what we don't know of, be spontaneous to things we are unaware of, be open minded, zero judgemental and also up for anything.

From my own life experiences as well as the ones I have heard from different groups of mine where most of my friends are vocal about their problems, one thing I have realised is that, most people are self-centered, which to an extent is fine as at the end of the day we are our best friend but in this process of how life works what is the most important is that we should learn to forgive people, stop self sabotaging, and not regretting our past.

Sometimes when we are happy, people are jealous, that is okay as well, it is very humane, just ignore and be happy and do good always. Sometimes even giving the best of all that one can do might not be enough, but that's okay, just keep giving. It is not about the other side, it is always about YOU.

This conceptual diagram is from a report on the research design and findings of a 23-year longitudinal study of the impact of intrafamilial sexual abuse on female development published on 26th June 2013 by Penelope K. Trickett, Jennie G. Noll, Frank W. Putnam.

This is so much beyond what we think the influence of past is on us. This report was an eye opener for me just like all the psychology articles that I read. Just like fitness of the physical body, wellness of our mental space is very important, be it talking to a sibling/friend/therapist or even consulting a psychologist/psychiatrist, though these are looked upon very negatively, it is high time we break these stereotypes and focus on ourselves.

Like I always say, no else can ever love us the way we can love ourselves.


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