“Don’t Look Back, You’re Not Going That Way” the sign said.
Technically, it’s true. If you want to forward, you need to look that way, so you watch your step and what’s further in front of you.
It wasn’t the sign on a road though. It was not on the runway either. The sign printed on paper was taped to the wall at a mental hospital unit.
It got me thinking, obviously, otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this. Now, what was it about that sign, or rather its message, that got me thinking? As an Overthinker (which I certainly am, I wish that was an official medical term, because maybe there would be meds that slow and calm you down without causing any unwanted retardation), I went into the Think Forest. The path I walked was something different than whoever wrote put that sign up, or whoever put together all those similar posts on the Net which I found looking for a suitable image for this post to be published with.
What I thought of was the concept of history.
How do we move forward without knowing what caused us to get here in the first place? How do we make right without learning what was wrong? How do we avoid making mistakes if we haven’t learnt from the ones we made in the past? The only way to learn of those is to study them. Not under a microscope, of course; that will keep us in the rut for too long. Yet still, if we don’t try to understand what has caused us the ill, how will we ever be healthy again – tomorrow or next year?
As an Overthinker, I do sometimes wonder if I’m giving it too much thought, all this musing and wondering, which is why I get to be an Overthinker, as acknowledged by the others with whom I’d share these thoughts with. Yet, as soon as I think of that, I also realize something that doing so is in fact practising something useful. I think it’s called “reflection.” That’s a good thing, isn’t it? Another word for it is “hindsight.” And it seems to me that hindsight is something that much of our world lacks lately. Maybe even longer than “lately.”
We tend to repeat our mistakes over and over. We put millions of whatever currency into improving and perfecting means of communication on a global and neighborly level, but we fail to connect with people next to us. We keep making guns and get sad of how many people die. We then keep voting for people who keep smiling and hug children and that is never a good sign. We keep working jobs we can’t stand hoping it would get better. We keep using substances to keep us ok, but they never do, and we keep lying to ourselves that will change, we just need time to figure things out; that maybe somebody will come and help us with this, but then, we are still failing to connect with others, right?
Looking back is highly important. If I didn’t do so, I’d be drinking still, or drinking again. It’s no use to look back all the time, – either your neck will get sore, or you won’t see a car coming your way. But I think practicing reflecting is what still somehow keeping us alive. Is it worth to just keep alive, though? Maybe we could live better?
“The farther backwards you will look, the farther forward you will see.” W. Churchill
the image was copied from https://www.autismsociety-nc.org/a-look-back-at-a-remarkable-year/ thanks.