Things I Would Tell My Past Self
We are approaching the end of 2022. Can you believe that the year is nearly over? It has been quite a challenge as have the past few years. We are facing issues and situations that we probably never imagined we would be talking about or facing and we’re seeing a level of darkness in the world that we have never been aware of before. Remember that awareness is the critical word here, it has always been here, we have just not been aware of it before.
This week we have more fast moving, expansive energy aspects including the Solstice, a new moon, and Jupiter entering Aries. We’re entering the holiday season, which is a time of mixed emotions for many people. Go with your own flow here, be true to your own needs, wants, and priorities. And since this is a time when we tend to think about the past and a lot of memories arise, I decided to do something I have never done before with this week’s podcast and article, give my past self 5 pieces of advice so she could have more joy and less pain, more success and fewer disappointments, on this journey.
Have you ever said that you would love to turn back time, go back to the past and undo some choices you have made, and most importantly, give your past self some advice that would help him or her in their life.
What if you could avoid the trauma, tears, grief, disappointments, and shame.
What if you could be more confident, clear, self-aware, and have more self-esteem?
What if you could give your past self 5 pieces of advice that would help him or her and erase some of the trauma you have experience in your lifetime?
In the 20 years that I have been writing this blog I have never done this kind of article but I believe that it is time. I am not doing it from a place of regret, but from a place of acknowledgement of how far I have come and to have closure with the past. Because as I realize the lessons, blessings, and truth of the past I also complete the timeline and give myself closure so I no longer have to regret the past or anything that happened or did not happen. So let’s go and as you read these 5 things that I would like to tell my past self, think about what you would tell your past self today.
- Criticism and judgment are simply someone else’s opinion of you and can mirror their jealousy over who you are, your light, your gifts and talents, and your being.
I wish I had known this so many years ago, starting during my childhood, when I believed that it was my fault that someone took issue with what I did or said. Had I considered that it was possible to ignore them, I would have not responded by dimming my light, trying to please them, or believing that I was in the wrong every time. I would have been more protective of myself rather than dismissing myself because it appeared that someone took issue with me.
Now criticism and jealousy were part of my family dynamic so taking a stand against it was not always possible when I was younger. I get that. But it was a possibility when I was older and I let myself be swayed, manipulated, and muted by it far too much and for far too long. And the jealousy came from people I wanted to love and accept me so instead of shielding myself from them and their energy, I tried to compensate for their jealousy by being less of myself. As you know, that doesn’t work. The result was that I turned away from my highest potential and opportunities that my well honed ‘jealousy radar’ knew would create another level of criticism and judgment. Until one day I decided that I was no longer going to do that. I was going to let my light shine no matter what anyone thought or said about it. And that is exactly what I would tell my past self – shine your light as brightly as possible, no matter what.
- People will talk about you so give them something positive to talk about because there is nothing wrong with you.
This one is especially poignant for me because I was often the topic of looks and whispers as a child as I was physically handicapped by the vaccine induced paralysis that would change my life forever. The morning of November 22, 1963 I went to school a happy child who loved to learn and who wanted to become a ballerina. By that evening I was paralyzed from the neck down and the last thing I remember for the next week was lying on the back seat of my parents’ car looking at the stars in the sky on the way to the hospital.
When I woke up from a coma a week later I saw my parents and the doctor talking and heard the doctor say that I would never walk again. I was determined to prove him wrong and I did. But it did not happen for another 5 years. I was in the hospital for 2 years. No more school, no more ballet dreams, and no more walking or motion of any kind. It is truly a miracle that I can walk and move today although I have not fully recovered and never will.
After I was released from the hospital I had to be in a wheelchair because I still could not walk, I had no movement from the waist down. Eventually I could walk with braces that went from my hip to my ankle and were fastened to brown orthopedic shoes (no cute velvet Mary Jane shoes for me) and crutches. I was stared at a lot. It was unusual to see a handicapped child, so people stared and whispered. I could hear them asking each other ‘what was wrong with me’. I grew to hate being looked at and that expanded to being the center of attention.
When I was in my corporate career I hated being the center of attention or in a situation where everyone was looking at me and yet I was often the lead in technical projects, in organizations, and in high level positions. I managed to perform because I had a strong work ethic, I loved my work, and I wanted to do well but it was hard. I was always in doubt about what people really thought about me and whether I was Ok or was there something wrong with me.
I would remind my past self that the brightest lights get noticed and that doesn’t mean there is something wrong.
- Your dreams and visions are worthy of being your priority and should not be sacrificed for the benefit of others.
How many times did I ignore what I wanted because it was not convenient for others, someone else’s needs took priority, or I was trying to avoid judgment, criticism, blame and shame so I put my dreams away for later. I did not realize how much later ‘later’ would be for some things.
Or I pretended my dreams and goals were not important and instead, I helped someone else realize their dreams. I have supported people who turned around and betrayed and abandoned me, who took what I offered and never even said thank you. Many people were able to realize their goals and succeed thanks to my support and efforts while I was ignoring my own dreams. At the time I thought I was being helpful and supportive, but I did have an agenda. I believed that this was the cost of getting their approval and I was wrong. They had no approval to give me but they were more than happy to have my help. Now I am much more discerning about who gets my help and how
I would tell my past self to contribute her time, energy, and effort to others’ dreams with great discernment. And that she should go after everything she wanted, to be unafraid, bold, and daring and to not worry about what anyone said or thought.
- Being a smart, intelligent woman is not a liability.
I could expand this one to ‘having unique gifts and talents’ is not a liability. I have always been told I was a ‘smart girl’ from the time I was very young. For most of my school years I could not do sports, but I excelled at my studies. I was very intelligent and excelled in school and maybe that was augmented because I could not do sports. In college I was the curve breaker, and I always did my all of my work and some extra simply because I love learning and I loved school. But I grew up in the era when women were not supposed to be really smart or accomplished. All they needed to do was be nice and accommodating so they could marry a nice man who would take care of them.
Being the smart girl mean being called a nerd or a bookworm or worse, I was someone that intimidated many people, men and women, simply because I was curious, intelligent, and very knowledgeable. I eventually had to overcome that out of the necessity of surviving in an industry, the tech industry, where being smart was not a liability, it was a requirement.
Then my daughter became a teen and I remember her telling me one day that ‘she did not want to be smart like me because boys would not like her.’ I told her that there was no value in being liked by boys who did not appreciate intelligence. She also had to tell her teenage daughter the same thing.
Why do we, especially as women, think it’s a liability to be intellectual, worldly, curious, and knowledgeable? We brush off compliments about our intelligence as nothing important while we hope that someone notices our hair, clothes, and other aspects of our appearance.
We don’t want to stand out because we’re afraid of criticism and more, we are afraid of being different, of not being accepted or acceptable. I will not get into the lifetimes of our energetic history that instilled fears of being persecuted, targeted, and judged but they are significant, and they make these choices for us when we are faced with the choice of standing out or standing down. Reminding us with painfully clear energetic memories that we’re safer if no one notices us for our differences.
Yet our intelligence, curiosity, and our capacity for knowledge are part of our spiritual gifts. They are what creates new energy containers when ours have run out of energy road, and it is time to create a new paradigm for our reality. We need these abilities to expand into new paradigms, to embody new potentials, and to embrace and efficiently assume our 5D multi-dimensional selves.
What would I have told my former self? To expand her knowledge, curiosity, and creativity as much as possible, to shine with her intelligence and to be proud of it because it was part of her. And to never be afraid or ashamed of who or what she was for any reason.
- And finally, I would have told my younger self to never spend any time in regret, shame, blame, or guilt over anything in the past, especially past decisions that are being reviewed in the present. To avoid that today I remind myself that I always make the best and what I believe are the wisest decisions at the time. Sometimes they are the only decisions I am aware of and sometimes the one I choose may not be a good one but it’s better than the others.
The irony of self-judgment over past decisions is that the only way we know that something may not have been the best choice is to have experienced the results of that choice. So we can’t know how something will turn out until we do it and then once we have done it we judge ourselves because we didn’t like the outcome. Hmmmm.
I would add to that the need to be self-caring and to remember that our decisions often include other agendas, such as making a decision because we think that is what someone wants us to do, or making a choice based on what we think is right for someone else – and we’ll fit our benefits in there somewhere.
So often when we judge our past we forget that what we considered bad choices or decisions are those that we made against our intuition or better judgment. So instead of saying ‘what was I thinking’, consider asking yourself who you were trying to please or what ‘other’ agendas were at play behind the scenes.
I would tell my younger, past self to choose wisely and well, and for herself.
And one more thing, since I am on the topic, I would also tell my past, younger self, and maybe this could be first on this list, that it is not and has never been her job to make others happy, to make their lives better, to solve their problems, or to be attendant to their emotional needs. Now for those of you who are emotional or energy empaths this is tough because you know when people are sad, upset, and unhappy and you think that you need to change their mood, feelings, and make them feel better.
Why do we do that? Well, there are several reasons. One is that happy people do not target us if they notice our light. Another is that we think this is our mission, to make everyone happy. It isn’t. Our mission is to shine our light and if others can see it, great. If not, that’s Ok too. We decided that since we were going to end our karma in this lifetime and we chose our toughest karmic partners to work with, that we were going to make sure that everyone saw, embraced, and embodied the light. Wasn’t that our barometer of success?
Well, no and it has been a very tough and painful journey for us when we had that belief. But that can be changed and it has to change if we are ever to be free of our self-imposed obligations of protecting ourselves by ensuring that everyone around us is feeling great even if we are feeling miserable or we are using all of our time, energy, and effort on behalf of everyone else.
Happiness is a choice and we can relieve ourselves of the burden of responsibility for the world’s happiness when we remember that people can choose to be happy or not and they choose the level of happiness that they can embody. And that is not our concern or responsibility.
I’m not saying these things with regret or anger or judgment. I am going full circle to give myself closure and to honor the person I was as well as the person I have become.
I remember my past self as being lonely, scared, anxious, frustrated, and feeling very ill prepared for life. It was not easy for a strong empath who was surrounded by unhappy and jealous people, something I am sure you know very well. Today is so much better and I want to reach back in time to that scared, lonely young woman and let her know that in the end it will all work out.
Meanwhile, the timelines that those past experiences created are being replaced with new intentions, bold blasts of energy, new portals of potential, strong intentions for joy, and an appreciation for the person I have been as well as the one I am becoming every day.
**By Jennifer Hoffman