Starting over is like starting from scratch, isn’t it? Well, it doesn’t have to be. It all depends on your perspective. I, for one, choose not to see it that way. It doesn’t have to feel as though your life until that point has been a waste, because it hasn’t been. But that’s your choice.
In fact, it affords you the chance to do things a different way if you want to. Or you can do it again the right way but with a new mindset. Because no matter how much or how little time has passed, you’re different now.
Whatever happened previously has brought you to where you are now, and it’s made you who you are now. It hurt you, or helped you mature, but whatever it was, it brought you here. You can use your experience to navigate your future, and make the best of it, based on what you want your life to be.
What you want for yourself will likely change with time. For example, if you’re newly out of a marriage, what you want soon after the split could be different from 2 years down the track. ie shag first, relationship later. Getting back into dating can be a real headfuck. Even keeping it casual can be a headfuck, but you’re stronger than you ever were, so you can do it.
You won’t necessarily know what you want straight away, and you might make a few mistakes along the way, but they’re important, because they’ll help you figure out what you do and don’t want. From the time I truly came to the realisation that I was on my own, and had to start all over again, I was both determined to feel every emotion and move forward as quickly as possible.
I’ve had a few traumatic events happen in the years I’ve walked this earth, but I’ve certainly learned to live them. People can tend to indulge themselves so much that they become more of a victim after the fact than they were at the time of the traumatic incident.
That’s not me. I refuse to let any of the horrible things which have happened become bigger than me, and define me. It would be really easy to do, in fact, much easier than what I did.
I’ve also found that by looking into the past and bringing forward brave moments helps me now. I remember times when I didn’t think I could make it, or survive the trauma, and I’m grateful for what I became as a result of that event, and the joy or triumph I felt by conquering the feat which seemed so completely insurmountable at the time.
Most of us don’t live uneventful lives, we have shit things happen in our lives, and it’s up to us to get what we can out of those moments so that we’re strong enough to cope with what comes our way next. As much as we try to be in control of our life, there are things we’ll never expect, people changing their mind about being in a relationship with us, friends and loved ones dying. We can’t control those, but we have to learn to live through them.
And by learning how to cope with mourning what we’ve lost, we’ll be strong enough to face what happens in our future when we start over again. Think about starting over as spring, a chance to freshen up, clean the windows of your life, and look around with clear vision- and get going!
Marie-Louise Pawsey is the founder of Life Stylin,’ which aims to help people who feel a bit stuck in their life, and unsure of their next step toward happiness. She helps them to examine aspects which are holding them back, and empowers them to make smart decisions that they will forever be confident in.