A few years back, I was thinking about how I led my life as a student and as an adolescent. Nostalgic as they were, I felt silly about some of the things I did in my earlier life. I thought I was ashamed. I did not believe I did it. I knew I could not possibly redo my past, but went on thinking that my present was so better than that and I may not possibly repeat the silliness of my past. And here I am today — the person I thought I will be. But this time, I feel even sillier. Even more ashamed. Of what I was a few years back. What happened now? Did I do any ridiculous things? What possibly could have happened to somebody who thought a few years back, that he has come a long way? I was terribly confused.And there are those things that you subconsciously keep thinking about all the time. This fear I just explained, became one such subconscious thought. I spend several hours and days and weeks and months thinking about it.
Why — regardless of what point in life you are — do you feel awkward about your past? Why do you always think you shouldn’t have done something you did?
Now, I reckon — this is exactly what constitutes a paradigm shift.
We all are social animals. We learn from others mistakes. We learn from mistakes of our own. Some say it, some don’t. But we constantly change gears, gain perspectives, elevate our reference points. As long you keep learning, you will have your past to be ashamed of. As long as you are “moving on” you will never be what you were in the past. Much like when you board a train at Point A and the train moves, after sometime — you cannot expect to be in Point A. Now you cannot argue that train can go in circles. Because, while trains sure can move go in circles, life does not. Life is linear. You either board the train and go uphill (or downhill) or don’t board the train. In the train of life, if you move uphill, you would feel bad about your past. If you move downhill, you would feel good about your past. You cannot “not board the train” in real life.
Which brings me to the theory that — feeling ashamed about your past can even be considered an indication that you are moving in the right direction. The more ashamed you think of your past, the more you have grown.
If this is true, people — please feel good everytime you think negatively of your past.
If this is true, you — the person reading this — can belong to 1 of the 2 types of people:
You feel awkward about your past (Good job, you are growing!)
You don’t feel awkward about your past (You took the wrong train)
Either way you shouldn’t be at the same place!