How to Change Your Past, Your Present, and Your Future
By Wesley J. Doherty
Yes, transformation is possible. I can help you to transform your past, present, and future because I have experienced this myself.
Change is one of the most difficult things for people to experience. Change scares us because whenever things change, we are propelled into the unknown. Unfortunately, much of what we "know" no longer serves us. So even when it is for our ultimate good, we are reluctant to let go of the familiar. And it is often the familar we want to change - repetitive patterns in health, relationships, career, and money.
The definition of "transform" is "to make over to a radically different form, composition, state, or disposition." By definition, then, to be transformed means we have to change. Therefore, in order to experience the transformation of our past, our present, and our future, we must be willing to experience fear for a short while. To allow transformation to happen, we have to be able to "be" with change and the fear that may accompany it.
So if we want to be transformed - to change the form of our lives and bodies, to alter our biological and experiential composition, to have a "re-do" with a clean slate, and to change our natural predisposition to life for the better - we need to experience a personal transformation. The clues to how we can enjoy all that are found in the definition of "transformation"–a fundamental alteration in one's system of beliefs. So in order to experience a personal transformation we need to change our beliefs, specifically the beliefs that created the portions of our lives that we would like to have transformed.
Unfortunately, changing our beliefs can seem scarier than changing things that are external to us. I was always told (and I believed it at the time) that transforming my present and my future were possible but very difficult. But changing one's past, one's history, what has already happened? This type of transformation was only possible in movies where the stars magically time travel into the past, heroically changing the course of a pivotal event earlier in their lives, and then return to their present where they watch their lives and the lives of those around them happily change right in front of their very eyes.
Putting aside Hollywood's version of time travel for a moment, I would like to show you how you can have your autobiography rewritten and enjoy your personal transformation right in front of your very eyes. You will then be able to recount your life story more honestly and as a much happier, gentler, and more empowering life story. I can best illustrate how you can change your past, your present, and your future through my own story.
A number of years ago, a man who was my friend for a decade approached me to expand his business in a new area plus enhance the existing business. I was very excited by the invitation—I loved this guy, his business was exciting, and I could immediately see how to increase business. On our first day together, I created a plan that would help his business increase by millions of dollars within just a few years. We shook hands on it, and we were off and running. The first year, I worked hard and smart, 80 hours a week, and we doubled and tripled expectations. After two years of working incredibly hard, the business was reaching critical mass: all the hard work was starting to pay off for our partners and us. And then the nature of the business changed a bit, my partner got scared, and he squeezed me out, taking the profits and leaving me with no source of income.
I was furious! I had worked grueling hours building this company and now that it was profitable, he alone was going to get the fruits of our labors. And the worst part of it all was that I had done nothing wrong—I had done everything I promised and more, improving the existing business, making the company known and respected across the country, and helping the business to expand 2,000 miles west, yet I was left with nothing to show for it. After all the hard work, I was too physically, mentally, and emotionally exhausted to start all over again. I was devastated. I felt betrayed, lost, wronged, angry, and victimized.
For the next few weeks, I was either seething with anger or numbing out sleeping or watching TV. I could think of nothing but his betrayal and my planned revenge, except when I was with my children. No matter how bad things were for me, I didn't want my children to know anything of my troubles. The fact that they were (and continue to be) a pure delight gave my mind a much needed vacation. Luckily, time with my children gave me a brief moment of clarity where I recognized that this wasn't the first time I had been betrayed by someone near and dear to me even though I had done nothing to deserve the betrayal.
And then it hit me: in those repetitive experiences in my life, I WAS THE COMMON DENOMINATOR! I remembered that the great psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud called this recurrence "repetition compulsion," and explained it as the unconscious mind compelling us to repeat and relive the childhood dramas and hurts we suffered at the hands of our primary caregivers over and over again even into adulthood until the wounds are worked through and healed. If the trauma was abandonment, we continually find ourselves in relationship with people, circumstances, and things that result in abandonment; if the hurt is from withholding affection and support, then we find ourselves in relationship with withholding and controlling bosses, partners, and friends. Whatever the wound, we repetitively find ourselves unconsciously drawn to people, circumstances, and things that trigger the wound.
Using this "AHA!" moment, I was able to piece together my past to learn that the original wound occurred when I was 5 or 6 years old. That event left me believing that I had lost my God-given Innocence. But being the stubborn person that I was (and sometimes continue to be), I decided being guilty was not something I could accept, so I made it my crusade to prove my innocence.
We live in a dualistic world where everything has its opposite: black has white, tall has short, rich has poor, cold has hot, right has wrong, man has woman, and victim has victimizer. Duality makes innocence a tricky commodity: In a world governed by opposites, for me to be innocent, someone else has to be guilty!
The first time I subconsciously co-created a painful situation to prove my innocence was shortly after the wounding event, when I was only 6 or 7 years old, and it was a miserable failure; I didn't get anyone to see my victimization nor my resulting innocence. Later, to prove myself an innocent victim, I co-created another experience but a little bigger and a little more dramatic so I could end up a little more injured: my innocence would be harder to miss this way. I would be vindicated! Unfortunately, it didn't work the second time either. And now, on top of feeling guilty, I was also beginning to feel like a failure.
Had this been a good strategy, I would have proven my innocence right away and happily moved on with my innocence acknowledged and intact. But the strategy was poor so it didn't work. Rather than let go of a broken strategy, I decided to up the ante a little more each time, until my innocence would be recognized and undeniable. Eventually, after many failed attempts, I came to the conclusion that I WAS BROKEN, not the strategy. But in my stubbornness I continued to co-create people, circumstances, and things that hopefully would finally prove how wronged I was—unfair poor grades in school, cars that were lemons, friends that betrayed, being wrongfully fired from jobs, romantic partners who cheated and lied, all these things and many more, all made in order to prove my innocence. And then here I was, face-to-face with the most recent in a long line of painful events–my friend and business partner cheating me out of my hard-earned income.
Thankfully, I realized there is a definition of "innocence" other than the dualistic definition. God's definition would have to be one of absolute Innocence, not an innocence requiring someone else's guilt: for God to agree with the dualistic definition, He would have to make it the only way one of His children could gain their innocence would be by making another of His children guilty, and that just doesn't make sense. Therefore, God's definition of "Innocence" would have to be absolute, where Innocence is given to everyone unconditionally. It would also have to be independent Innocence, an Innocence that is freestanding and could not be compromised by the beliefs or actions of others. (Who could possibly be powerful enough to take away what God gives freely?)
By relinquishing a dualistic definition of innocence and accepting a more universal and forgiving definition, I realized I was not a victim after all; I was simply choosing to live by a definition that not only didn't serve my higher good but also couldn't possibly exist. So I no longer saw my business partner as a betrayer or guilty victimizer; I saw him as a man who simply answered my call. What looked like an act of selfishness on his part turned out to be an act of love: he was just trying to help me prove my innocence in the same way that I was demanding it be proved. The loving act of a true friend! Ultimately, he helped me learn a lesson that all the broken promises, betrayed relationships, and faulty products of my life hadn't been able to teach me: that I was trying to regain something I never really had lost. Although my lesson came in a very unexpected way, I regained my Innocence! So....
I experienced a transformation of my past: When I now review those chapters of my life story, I no longer see myself as the victim of cheating women, untrustworthy friends, and disreputable salespeople. I now see myself in partnership and co-creating with a universe filled with loving people, circumstances, and things, all who respond perfectly to my call and try to show me where I mistakenly hold false ideas and beliefs to be true. My friend and business partner didn't leave me financially and emotionally bankrupt; he helped me heal a place in me that I had not let a lifetime of opportunities heal. My past had been transformed, right in front of my eyes. And because I see my past differently....
I am experiencing a transformation of my present: With a healthier and more powerful definition of Innocence, I am now attractive to and attracted to people, circumstances, and things that support my new-found Innocence—my romances are with women of integrity, my friends don't lie, and the things I own rarely break. Drama has (for the most part) left my life all because I changed one belief! So....
I will experience a transformation of my future: The future is simply a manifestation of what we are presently thinking. Because I am confident of my Innocence, I no longer walk into my future trying to prove my innocence, so I manifest a very different existence. The energy that used to go towards upset and damage control has been transformed into an energy that propels me forward in my life instead of being used to recycle me through the same repetitive and harmful dramas. I move more quickly and easily from one joy to the next.
As I watched the text of my history transform, the words literally changed right in front of my eyes. And because this was not a movie and there were no Hollywood special effects, the magic of the miracle was real and everlasting.
Here's How To Enjoy Your Own Personal Transformation
Take a look at your life and take inventory of the places you find yourself asking, "Why do I always end up with __________ who always __________?" Is it your romantic partners, jobs, bosses, friends, cars, appliances, or landlords? Just where is it you find yourself in the same situation over and over again, through what seems to be no fault of your own?
Once you have a completed list written down, pick one repetitive event to start with and allow for the possibility that you have helped to make this event reoccur by a belief you subconsciously hold. This may seem difficult at first; the belief I described had been with me since I was 6 years old and, being part of the wallpaper of my life, had become invisible to me. It was also necessary for me to let go of the payoffs my belief in my own self-righteousness afforded me - this was probably the most difficult part of the whole transformation process and it was also the most worthwhile. There may be other things you need to let go of, too - for instance, I had to let go of my stubbornness.
On a separate sheet of paper, write down the thoughts and beliefs you could be holding that might consistently produce an outcome such as the one you are repetitively experiencing. Keep this piece of paper in a safe place so you can come back to it often and add new ideas.
Once you have a belief that feels like it could be the most appropriate or the one that feels right, write a definition that fits with the dualistic viewpoint, where an opposite outside of you must occur in order for the event to happen.
Once you have that definition in place, write another definition for your goal, belief, or word (mine was "innocence") that doesn't depend on an opposite or anything outside of you to experience its outcome. For example, my limiting dualistic definition of "innocence" was, "For me to be innocent, someone else has to be guilty" and my more abundant definition of "Innocence" is, "Everyone embodies God's Innocence, so I can enjoy my Innocence without needing to have or make anyone else guilty. I choose to enjoy my Innocence independent of what others are thinking or doing."
The next step is to take your new and more abundant definition and apply it to past experiences. Write down how each event plays out now that the action is being directed by the new, more abundant definition. As you do that, notice how good it feels to be free of the fearful and limiting emotions of being the helpless victim and how powerful it feels to be co-creating with loving partners. Then write down all the ways this new definition is going to positively change your present and your future. As part of this list, make sure you note that your transformation is going to benefit you in ways you cannot even imagine. (This has been one of the greatest benefits of my own transformation - people, circumstances, and things have entered my life in ways that I could not have ever imagined but also never been able to engineer!)
This new viewpoint will give you a glimpse of how powerful you really are and how, when you channel your power away from negative, self-limiting, and self-defeating directions and into positive, loving, and empowering directions, your life will get easier and easier!
A final note on your transformation — when you change, the world around you transforms. Your transformation is going to positively effect the people in your life. Some of these effects you will see, others you will never know about. In fact, your transformation is going to provide the opportunity for others to experience their own transformation. Many of these people you will not even notice, they will just be passerby's in the street, so you will know nothing of their transformation. It is important that you trust your transformation will have positive effects that you will be unaware of. Accept and enjoy the peace in your heart that comes with this trust.
Many years ago I read a story of a beggar who stood in a busy train station selling pencils out of a cup. He described himself at that time as a man with no hope and terrible self-esteem. One commuter walked past, dropped a quarter in the cup and kept walking. Abruptly, the commuter stopped, turned around, came back and took a pencil saying, "You're not a beggar, you're a businessman." The commuter went to his grave never knowing how that one encounter changed the beggars life. The "beggar" took that statement to heart, changed his beliefs about himself and what was possible for him, and reinvested the money he made from the pencils into other ventures, and then reinvesting that money again. Eventually, he became a very successful entrepreneur, living in a beautiful home and having a great family. That one statement led to a complete personal transformation, even though the man who was the catalyst never knew a thing about it.
So enjoy your transformation without limiting the benefits to what you can recognize. Trust that your transformation is going to be the catalyst to the transformation of others. By being willing to experience the short-term fear of entering the unknown, your transformation will give birth to a greater you.
Please visit Wesley's web site at An Easier Life for additional articles, programs, and resources on how to have your easier life.