When we talk about “learning to forget,” this simply means learning not to let your past memories bring you down in the present. No one expects you to ever forget about your bad memories completely, but if you can learn to keep them in the past and only focus on the present then that is good enough. We all have painful memories from our past that will come back to try and haunt us in the present. It is not always easy to forget about these terrible memories, especially if they were traumatic or life changing events in your life.
So, how does someone learn to forget about these past memories? The layman person might tell you to go see a psychiatrist or talk to somebody. That is the common answer given to anyone with a painful memory that hurts them emotionally. The problem with this answer is not everybody can afford to pay a psychiatrist $125 per hour for them to listen to their problems. So, who else can you talk to? For starters you can try talking with friends or family about your problems. Everybody has at least one person they can trust with their secrets. Why pay a total stranger to listen to your problems when you can tell a friend for free? A friend’s advice will probably be more valuable than a psychiatrist’s advice.
The first step is to make sure you find happiness in the present. Most people who live unhappy lives tend to make excuses for their unhappiness by blaming it on their childhood or some past experience that changed them for the worse. What they don’t realize is that these painful memories are only psychological and if they can learn to live in the present instead of the past then they can find happiness. Chances are there are opportunities for happiness all around you, but you have to be ready to grab them. Take advantage of any opportunity to be happy and stop letting yourself be miserable by dwelling on the past.
Let go of these old memories by making peace with them. If you keep dwelling on your painful memories then they will continue to cause you pain for the rest of your life. Then you will never be happy. So, make yourself realize that the past cannot hurt you and just be the person you want to be in the present. This is not always easy to do, but there are methods in making your present more important than your past.
If you are ever going to forget about the past you need to distance yourself from reminders of the past that may be around you. This means you should move to a new location where you can start a new life for yourself. For example, if you grew up in a town where you had bad experiences then you wouldn’t do yourself much good if you stayed in that town your whole life. You need to get out and make new experiences for yourself someplace else.
One great thing about moving to a new location is that nobody knows you or what you have done in the past. Once you are settled in a new town or city then you will have opportunities to start meeting new people and have new experiences that don’t resemble any of your past experiences. With all of these new experiences, the bad memories you once had will seem like a bad dream instead of a harsh reality. This will give you the opportunity to totally reinvent your identity and show the world an entirely new you. Happiness will sure come to you quickly after that.
Moving away from reminders of your past is always a good technique for learning to forget. Sometimes just changing your location won’t be enough. You will have to change your body and your mind as well. In other words, try changing your appearance. If you were overweight for most of your life, then try losing weight by eating healthy and exercising at the gym. You will be amazed how differently you will feel once you look in the mirror. It may get to the point where you don’t recognize yourself anymore. This is a good thing because it will help you forget about the past when you look in the mirror and see a different, but healthier person.
As for your mind, try to fill it with more knowledge through learning and education. And besides the experience of moving to a new location, try getting other new experiences as well. You can take vacations and see places that you have always wanted to see. The whole idea is to break out of your shell that you may be keeping yourself in. When people have this shell it is a barrier they create where they keep all of their past memories inside of it because that is all they know. Breaking through the barrier will open up the body and the mind to adventures, which will bury past memories deep inside of you.
All of our memories cannot be forgotten completely. We are only human and we cannot just delete memories from our brains like a file on the computer. The memories that we want to forget about simply need to be pushed aside by memories we want to remember. If you keep filling your head with new memories then your brain will be so preoccupied with thoughts of the present that it won’t even have time to dwell on the past memories. Those who keep thinking about the past have nothing going on for them in the present. These are the kinds of people who stay in one place and stick with the same routine lifestyle every day. This causes a person to get bored and when people are bored their minds start to wander in all sorts of directions, like towards the past. So, just keep your life as active as possible in the present and you should have no problem forgetting about the past. It is that simple.