We often don’t like to think about any link to the past; we’re quick to try to forget and move on. But the past is the link to the future, and all that’s behind you is pointing you forward.
How our link to the past shapes our future
Legacy is built backwards. The reason you think backwards is so that you have a horizon to look at while you’re walking forward on your path.
Self reflect and evaluate.
You cannot answer with anything that hasn’t happened to you. What did you do to shape this year? Did you shape the ability to stand tall in the midst of adversity? Did you show people how to rise above and keep going when everything seemed to be against you? Did you teach people how to win with integrity? Did you speak the truth? Did you learn how to speak your own truth? How about loving others or leading others? How did you live? Who did you love, and was it consistent in each area of your life?
The past links to your future.
Building a legacy is dope, but the link to the past connects to the future. The adage holds true; you cannot see where you’re going until you understand where you’ve been. One of the greatest speeches in American history, Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg address in the throes of the civil war, gives a speech challenging every American to find and fulfill their role or responsibility in this country. A government of the people by the people for the people so that it shall not perish from the earth. A vision for all people to have the right to be treated equally; he was casting the vision linking the past to the future in the midst of adversity while the nation was in civil war.
Take time to honor the past.
Our lives are wrapped up in our families, businesses, personal trials, and triumphs. Covid taught us that all things end, but you can begin again. Honor the gifts received from friends and family members as well as the moments that were captured.
Look how far you have come.
You probably picked a word for 2022 and created vision boards, declared and decreed everything that you were going to accomplish for the year. Self reflect: How many boxes did you get to check off? Did the year go as planned? Did life punch you in the mouth? You may have fallen but what matters is that you got up, dusted yourself off, and stood tall in your strength, and that, my friends is a great way to end the year.
Conclusion: Look to the past to look forward
As the year comes to a close, most of us are looking forward and making plans for the future – but sometimes, to move ahead, you have to look back. The best leaders are always taking stock of their lives, asking, and reflecting. The best way to make improvements is to decide 3 things: what came before, what comes next, and how to get it. Your link to the past doesn’t have to be scary; it’s the things we learn about ourselves that help us move forward into our success. Self reflect, and lead from within. Doing so allows you to see how much you’ve accomplished and where you still want to go.