“Reflection is important so long as it is concluded with a positive learning otherwise it turns into rumination and life becomes an endless loop, a search for answers that cannot be found in lost time.” ~ Ola Al Bitar
My anxieties have taught me the importance of the present moment and that all answers are in each moment as it is being lived. I am slowly learning that one does not necessarily need to trace their steps backwards in order to move forward, for everything that has happened in the past was happening at the level of perception that was true in that given moment.
Reflection is important so long as it is concluded with a positive learning otherwise it turns into rumination and life becomes an endless loop, a search for answers that cannot be found in lost time.
I say this because I have ruminated over scenarios and past experiences enough to have removed myself completely from reality, and by reality here, I simply mean the current experience.
With rumination often you open the door to endless anxieties and what if’s, you eventually begin to see a story from what seems like a devastating perspective that is most likely not the ultimate truth. But rumination is not your friend.
How to Conclude the Past Without Rumination
We need stories and conclusions and if the past did not come with a conclusion, then surely one must be generated, and this is the tricky part.
A book can never be complete without an ending, and it is a mistake to think that we are just one book, we are many books in this lifetime. As we grow and evolve, we write new stories that cannot fit into the same cover.
So, how does one conclude the past without rumination, without the need to read the first page all over again to gain a different understanding. That is the million-dollar question, for me at least.
I came up with one answer. Acceptance.
Not acceptance that things happened the way they should have because I am sure many people are tired of hearing the phrase “everything happens for a reason” but acceptance that every story can have multiple endings depending on the level of frequency we are vibrating at when we go back to it.
Acceptance that the story can change. That it is allowed to but that it does not need to, acceptance that some stories are left with open endings and that in and of itself is an ending and we are always one decision away from focusing on the new one that can be written.
Sometimes, the positive learning is as simple as:
I have learned that not everything makes sense looking back but what makes more sense right now is the sandwich I am about to bite on, because it is in front of me, and I can see it, and this is all that needs to make sense right now.
Acceptance, is a one-way ticket to destination unknown. An agreement you make with yourself the day you decide to write a new title even though the ending of the last book does not make sense.
Maybe imperfect endings are just catalysts for new beginnings.
Give Up Rumination: The Only Way Forward and Out of the Loop of Overthinking
Whatever happened in the past, happened relative to a truth back then and so the only truth true to you now is what you are currently living and there will be a new truth every day and so long as there is a new day, there is also new possibility.
Bring yourself back to your current reality because you might be missing out on the beauty of the details of an experience that is right in front of you.
Appreciate the moment, the characters that are in that moment and the events that are happening, as they are happening.
Give up rumination. Let go of all the thoughts that are attached to stories that no longer serve you. I know this lesson too well right now because my past overshadowed a beautiful experience that I was gifted but fear and rumination did not allow me to be fully present to enjoy it.
And so now, I have learned that acceptance and freedom from rumination are my only ways forward and out of the loop of overthinking.