Are we each the product of our individual past, or can we overcome our past to become better people? There’s a lot of buzz every January around resolutions, promises to do better, etc. – and I wrote about this before – but this time I want to take a different slant.
We hear tales every day of people who rose from terrible backgrounds to be successful – plus loving and giving. We also, sadly, hear about those who turned out bad because of the way they were raised/conditions they grew up in.
I read someone the other day who wrote: Embrace your past. It is part of who you are.
Well, that may be. But the person I was, growing up, is way far from the person I want to be now. If I utilize my past at all in my personal growth, it will be as an example of What Not To Do.
So while my past may be part of who I am – to teach me to be the exact opposite now of what I was back then – I will NEVER embrace it, because that girl was not someone I want to be in the same room with.
Either way, know this: THE STIGMA STAYS. Ebenezer Scrooge turned out in the end to be a nice guy (“Scrooge was as good as his word”). But he is nonetheless viewed as a tyrannical miser. To this day, we use his name as a pejorative: That guy is so mean, he’s a real Scrooge.
So even if you do a complete 180, you probably won’t be given credit for it.
Does that matter to you?
Is it worth it anyway?
Is it possible for someone to change that radically?
Or – as the saying goes – do we, the older we get, become more of who we really are?