5 Tips for letting go of the past

May 7, 2018

Releasing the grip that our past has on us can be very challenging. Feeling nostalgic and our predisposition to reminisce can be great when it involves pleasant and happy memories. But being stuck in a cycle of rehashing over unresolved issues and past hurt can fuel our inability and unwillingness to let go of our attachment to what could have been, those that have hurt us and past mistakes. One important lesson that yoga has taught me, is that learning to let go is ultimately a freeing experience, albeit a difficult one, but will leave you open to new things and will release you from the paralysing grip of the past.



Making the conscious decision to let go of past hurts and mistakes allows for change and helps to manifest a positive future. Committing to actively releasing past angst and baggage eliminates self-sabotage and doubt, creating room for self-acceptance and positive change.


Blame is counterproductive. Blaming others only serves to project our inner feelings onto others without taking ownership of our actions and thoughts. With every action comes a choice. A choice to take control of our emotions and actions or to let the idea of being the victim and blaming others take precedence. Ceasing to blame others involves taking responsibility and ownership of our lives and blazing our own trail toward a brighter, happier future. No amount of projection and laying blame will solve a situation, or let you release past hurt. Engaging in honest self-reflection and analysis will help you to become the individual you were meant to be, taking responsibility and action in your own life.


‘Holding on the anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.’ – The Buddha

Learning to forgive can be a hard and painful road. Forgiveness is not about agreeing with or condoning someone else’s actions toward us, but about accepting the past, and acknowledging what has happened and moving past it. Forgiving others also allows us to learn not to project blame onto others for our current situation. Learning to forgive yourself will help you learn to forgive others and create space within you to manifest love and positive intention.


Writing down your thoughts and ideas can be amazingly freeing emotionally and spiritually, and can help you to make sense of your pain and hang-ups about different areas of your life. Journalling and writing create a safe space for self-expression. We can lay all of our thoughts out before us in a visual way and make sense of what is inside ourselves. Write your own letter to the universe, if you feel this will help you make sense of what you’re feeling and help to manifest what you need in order to move on.


Being mindful and living in the present frees up your mind and spirit from past hurts and fears of the future. Living in the present means living in a state of acceptance – acceptance of self and of others, forgiving and acknowledging the past, the future and all that is out of your control. Practicing mindfulness and meditation can help us to let go of baggage and forge a happy and peaceful path, allowing for self-reconciliation, forgiveness of ourselves and others, and freeing the self from the constraints of the ego.

Practicing these tips and allowing for acknowledgment and acceptance of the past creates room for a beautiful and creative future, a clean slate and is as good as a karmic cleanse for the soul. The conscious effort, practicing forgiveness and articulating our feelings steers us in the right direction for healing and learning to move on from what is holding us back.


Article by Rachel Gill

Rachel is a yoga teacher & student, mother and freelance writer based on the NSW mid-north coast, Australia. You can connect with her via her holistic lifestyle blog ‘Inspire The Wild‘, or on instagram, facebook and twitter @rachelmarieyoga. 


Image via: Saint Belford

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