How do you qualify and quantify your memories? Are they in physical objects, such as photos, knick-knacks, old artwork or books?

Focusing on objects of memorabilia, do they bring back pleasant or happy memories? An object that you have in your home should remind you of happiness or at least bring a smile to your face. If it isn’t, it’s time to figure out why you’re still holding onto it.

Negative Memories

Is it guilt over a failed relationship? We’ve all been there, trying to hold onto a relationship, whether platonic or romantic, that just didn’t work despite everything. Don’t hold onto your pain, tell yourself that it’s alright, and let it go.

Do you feel obligated to hold onto it, because it’s from family or a friend, and you don’t want to (or are afraid to) tell them why it’s gone if they ask? If someone truly cares about you and your emotional wellbeing, they probably won’t notice (unless it’s something big) and if they do, they will surely understand. Take the time to talk to people, if you are getting rid of it, explain why or at least tell them that you are passing it on to the less fortunate by donating it. Very few people take offense to the thought that their gift will be enjoyed by more than one person.

No matter the reason that you hold onto these negative or neutral memories, any memory that you are keeping in the form of a physical object should be cherished and appreciated. The objects in your home should represent the love and happiness that you want to surround you.

If you want to rehash the past because you think it will ease your mind, do it! Don’t spend your time planning words that you won’t say. Start slow and use “I” statements. If you want to do this, start with something more recent and probably less painful. Something that was hurtful or negative that you want to resolve before it starts to fester.

Before you approach the source of the negativity, try to rationalize your thoughts and get them in order. Think through what you want to say and how you want to say it. Sort out your thoughts and emotions and write them down. When your words and thoughts are organized, it will be easier to think clearly and express yourself. Then open with an “I” statement:
  • I feel that your words were/are harsh and hurtful
  • I didn’t like how you spoke of
Don’t put bias or judgment in your words, that will only cause hostility and anger and that won’t help to ease your own personal painful memory. Just express the way that you felt/feel and how it affected you without putting any blame on them. It may have been their fault, but accusing them will not make anything better.

Positive Memories

Do you have photos and trinkets around that remind you of positive and happy memories? Sources of good memories can often make or break how you feel about yourself. If you have a lot of reminder of the good things in your life, then when a sadness or depression strikes you will have the power and the tools in your environment to fight it and bounce back easily.

Are there some pieces of memorabilia that you would like to showcase more? Go through what you have out right now and reassess how it makes you feel. Does any of it cause you to feel resentment or frustration? If you have a negative reaction to something you have presented, get rid of it! You don’t deserve to have something in open sight that causes you mental or psychological distress. Surround yourself with the most powerful memories possible and reap the psychological benefits.

Getting rid of weak or negative memories

When going through your possessions, you will likely come across an item that brings back a negative memory. Decide what you are going to do about it. Are you going to hold onto it, or get rid of it? Are you ready to release the memory and the accompanying emotions?
If you plan on keeping it, are you going to put it in the open so that visitors may see it and ask about it, or will you put it away so that you don’t have to look at it? Putting it away will only cause you to push the emotional response from that item down and may cause undue stress, so if you do that I would recommend making a note to yourself to revisit it when you have thought it through and may be in a better position to deal with the item and its accompanying memories.

Having memories surrounding you with good times and pleasant thoughts is always a good thing, but remember to live in the present and not to dwell too much on what has passed. Life is for the living, so remember to experience it while it’s here, and create new happy memories.

Peace and serenity,

Simply Me

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