Use Your Past to Your Advantage & Stop Holding Yourself Back

Becoming the person you dream of takes a lot of self-reflection and diving into the past to figure out who you wish to be in the future. 

Your history holds so many pearls of wisdom that can help you map out where you want to go and what direction to take, though often we overlook them (for many reasons!)

On Episode 158 of Productivity Paradox this week, I am talking all about how to use your past as a springboard and motivator to help you move forward, to the bright and prosperous personal and professional future that you want. 

During our chat, I’ll also be sharing the importance of sitting in discomfort and reflecting on who you’ve been so that you can permit yourself to let it go. (Understandably, this can be a challenge take on, but especially when our past hasn’t always treated us well.)

So today, I want to tap into how we can reframe our history to our advantage with some help from a Free Download I’ve created, just for you!

Let’s begin!


How to Reframe Your Past to Your Advantage

Sit with the Negative –

Let’s face it, we all have a past. Some of it good, some of it – well, not so good, right?

But here’s the thing: too often, we allow ourselves to get hung up on past mistakes, failures, setbacks, regrets, you name it. We view all of the uncomfortable moments of our past as if they are the be-all, end-all focal point to our lives as if we will continue to make the same mistakes, again and again, the moment we dare to step beyond them.

What this does is make us feel stuck in a swamp of regret, fear, and so forth. None of which benefit us when it comes to tackling our goals, gaining traction at work, and finding the success and contentment we want.

So my very first tip here is to allow yourself to be uncomfortable for a moment or two.

Let any unsettling feelings you have about your past, including what you experienced and who you may have been at that time, come.

It’s important not to shy away from facing these areas of discomfort. When we allow ourselves to reflect on our past, we open the doors to healing, growth, and so much more.

Dive into the Positive –

Though you may not believe it, our past is ripe with pearls of wisdom, just waiting to be uncovered. And this is something that I talk about more on this week’s episode and in my book, The Joy of Missing Out

All of the hardships, failures, and even the great times that we experience are like little life lessons that can guide us into the future if we let them. What does your past have to offer you?

Whether you’re reflecting on an experience that worked you sour or treated you well, there is inevitably some positivity hidden there in the depths of your history. 

Don’t be afraid to do the deep, reflective work that uncovering these highlights requires! 

And if you’re feeling stuck, don’t fret! Use the Reframing Your Past worksheet (and tune in to Episode 158) for some more insight here. 

Once you get started, you’ll see how you can flip even the toughest moments of your past on its head and start looking at it from a more positive space.  

Let Your Ideal Be Your Guide –

What does your ideal self look like as you envision your future? How does she spend her time, what does she do for a career, and who, in general, is she? What does she bring to the table in her professional and personal life?

The past can be a great indicator of where you don’t want to go in the future.

After all, the past is in the past for a reason. Let’s keep our past selves right where they are and make room for the ideal “future self” we all have in mind.

In other words, use your ideal self as a role model for your future.

Keeping that version of you in mind will help untether you from your past and can easily be the guiding light you need to stay focused and on the path to achieving your goals, big dreams, and other aspirations.

It all begins with you!

And hey, even if you don’t have an “ideal self” right now, that’s okay! One thing you may want to consider here is taking a personal development course, like the liveWELL Method

Not only will this help you work beyond the stumbling blocks of your past, but it will also help you narrow your focus to your inner purpose and the ideal future you deserve. Trust me!


How has your past been holding you back? Share your experiences (and what you’re going to do to reframe your history to your advantage) in the comments below…

And don’t forget to:

  • Check out Episode 158 of the podcast for more tips and tricks on using your past to your advantage so that you can take the necessary steps forward to living your best life
  • Head here to snag a copy of my FREE download, all geared toward helping you to Reframe Your Past.
  • Grab your copy of my book, The Joy of Missing Out, at or your favorite retailer!

You Might Also Like

  • Stop Apologizing at Work & Use These 3 Alternatives Instead
  • Stop Holding Yourself Back & Get the Promotion You Deserve
  • Why Your Emotional Intelligence Can Help You Succeed at Work
Tonya Dalton
Tonya Dalton