Getting the Most From 5 People in Your Past

A dissatisfying past produces a dissatisfying future. But, dissatisfaction is just a way of thinking.

reflecting on the past

7 responses to your past:

  1. Justify yourself. You were right and they were wrong.
  2. Assign blame. You failed because someone else screwed up.
  3. Explain preferred behavior. You wish you would have…
  4. Justify a dissatisfying present. You struggle with trusting people because someone let you down in the past, for example.
  5. Reclaim it. You wish things were like they used to be.
  6. Grow on it.
  7. Stumble over it.

One thing you can change about your past is the way it impacts you now.

4 things you control about your past:

  1. The way you judge it.
  2. The way you let it guide or not guide present decisions.
  3. The way you welcome or reject it.
  4. The way it helps or hurts you.

The past changes today.

Getting the most from 5 people in your past:

#1. Lifters:

  1. Who made you better?
  2. How did they make you better?
  3. How would you like to emulate their behaviors?

#2. Jerks:

  1. Who ticks you off?
  2. What about them was frustrating?
  3. What do your frustrations say about you?

#3. Transformers:

  1. Who made a positive difference in the world?
  2. How did they make the world better?
  3. How would you like to emulate their behaviors?

#4. Wasters:

  1. Who didn’t matter? You forgot them.
  2. Why did you forget them?
  3. How can you not be like them?

#5. Hurters:

  1. Who hurt you?
  2. What about them was hurtful?
  3. How are you better because you’ve been hurt?

Reflecting on your journey is navigating the past with tomorrow in mind.

Messages from my past:

  1. Communicate more.
  2. Say what you want without defensiveness.
  3. Remain open to what others want.
  4. Relax!
  5. Release people and hold high standards.
  6. Open up when you feel like closing down.
  7. Care for people deeply and move forward. Coddling is an excuse for staying the same.

How can leaders best use the past?

What messages come from your past?