7 Reasons to Look Back Before We Go Forward
January 8, 2019
Kylie-Ann Kobelt

When bad things happen in life, we are often told to leave it in the past. 

It’s a New Year, a new day… lets “Move on, focus on the future!”

“You can’t change the past, but you can change the present.”

Sound familiar? While this mindset is useful and in many ways true, visiting the past every now and again doesn’t mean you have to live there. In fact, there is value in looking back at the events and experiences of last year in order to move forward. 

Here are seven reasons as to why you should look back before going forward.

1) It can help you feel positive about the future
When you look back, you see how far you have progressed and how much of an improvement you have made in your life. Understanding and acknowledging that you have moved away from toxic or unhealthy situations can give you a sense of fulfillment and self-confidence.

2) You can avoid repeating the same mistakes
When we make a mistake – whether it is in a relationship, financially or even at work- we tend to feel awful. What comes with that feeling is a sense of never wanting to repeat that mistake again. While mistakes make you feel emotionally, mentally and physically horrible, they actually help us to be better prepared for the future. Who wants to repeat the same mistake for the same bad results?

3) Looking back gives you a chance to find some humour in the situation

At the time, bad situations are very rarely funny. But sometimes, when given the opportunity to revisit a situation, you can find something humorous that we didn’t see before. Sometimes when we remove the bitterness from a situation, we can even find memories that put a smile on our face.

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4) It can give you the confidence to try new things
Revisiting the past doesn’t have to be a negative experience. We can visit times where we were successful or when a good decision paid off. Keeping track of all of your accomplishments in the past will help you to have the confidence to try new things. Remember that time you took a leap with your business, and it paid off? Remember the time you started exercising, and you immediately felt better? Your past successes can help build enough confidence to try something new.

5) You can learn from when opportunities have passed you by 

The purpose of reflection is not to feel bad about your decisions but instead to learn from them. One of the biggest regrets people have is not taking an opportunity when it is right in front of them. But this can be a massive learning curve. Revisit the opportunity and take note of what was happening. What were the signs that you missed? What stopped you from grabbing that opportunity with both hands? Learn from your difficulties so that you can make better decisions in the future.

6) The cycle can be broken 
(I’ll discuss more about HOW TO soon)
When we refuse to revisit the past, we miss the opportunity to understand the trends of how our life operates. Everyone’s life tends to move in a cycle. In fact, if you carefully track your life, you can start to see patterns of where the same behaviour led to the same result. Understanding the patterns can help you break the cycle of negativity and move forward with different results. 

7) You can find closure
When you are in the thick of a situation, it can be hard to find closure. Having some time to move forward can allow you to look back at a time and start to heal. If you aren’t willing to acknowledge your past, then how do you expect to move forward? When we continue to avoid our past, we miss a chance to grow and heal. The pain then manifests in other aspects of other life, whether we like it or not. 

If things from the past aren’t addressed and remain incomplete, they can feel like an anchor around us and slow us down as we attempt to make improvements in our lives. Re-vising the past can actually help us to feel strong, independent and successful. You have changed. You have grown, and you should be proud of yourself. If we don’t occasionally look back, we will miss out on the opportunity to grow.


If you find you are feeling stuck in the past and there is something you need to let go of now but not sure where to start.

CLICK HERE and let’s talk about the HOW TO.


Kylie-Ann Kobelt

Kylie-Ann Kobelt

Personal Life Coach, Business Coach & Change Mentor


Hi, I’m Kylie-Ann, it is not the things that happen outside yourself that affect you the most. What goes on inside your head is the most powerful indicator of your success as a person. So, if your thinking becomes clearer and more empowered, so does your life.

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