3 Ways Memory Lane Helps My Business

I love going home for the holidays. I grew up in a small town outside of Las Vegas (no, not Henderson) and lived there with mostly the same people from kindergarten until I graduated from high school.

I also grew up within walking distance from the elementary school. So when I go for my morning walk, I usually end up going past this building.

Tonight as I strolled past, I did the same down memory lane. I looked at the things that have changed. How the trees have grown, the paint jobs… And looked at what hasn’t changed. The basketball hoops, the four square courts and tether ball poles…

I couldn’t help but think back to the person I was and how I have changed and how I haven’t.

So what was so significant and profound about this particular walk? Why is it important to take the occasional trip down memory lane?

Anchor Memories

I love having a place to come home to, not only to be with family, but as an anchor for memories.

I can walk down the same street I walked to elementary school and almost feel time come around full circle. It’s like I’m walking next to my childhood self, remembering different experiences on the walk to school, seeing new houses that weren’t there before, remembering the people who lived in the ones that were there.

It’s nice to know that my memory does indeed work, even when it feels like it doesn’t.

Sometimes I get going with so many things on my to do list that things inevitably get forgotten. Slowing down to wander memory lane with triggers show me that it does still work, and maybe I’m just overloading it from day to day.

Perspective

After spending some time with memories, I start to remember who I was as a child. What was important, what my dreams were and who I wanted to become.

If my childhood self met me today, what would they think? Would they be excited to follow the path I have chosen? How much have I changed? What mindsets have shifted?

Most importantly, am I happy with the growth and changes?

This is actually a favorite activity of mine and one tradition I follow every New Year’s Eve/Day.

I sit with my journal and look at where I was the past year, look at goals I had set and if I was able to achieve them. What successes and lessons I had that year and how to use them going forward.

2017 was a great year for me, I learned so much and was able to hit large milestones. Funny thing is, I didn’t meet a single goal I had set. In fact, some of them I made worse.

So this year, I adjusted. I set five goals that I wanted to focus on for the year and set plans for accountability and how to achieve those goals, as well as timelines.

Taking a walk down memory lane did this in a much broader sense. I was looking back over 20 years rather than just one. How far have I come the last 20 years? Where do I want to be in the next 20?

How do I get there?

Your Story

When you look back over 20 years, you realize you have some pretty great stories.

As a bookworm and a writer, I am obsessed with stories. I’m not alone in this. Human beings in general are obsessed with stories. They are how we make meaning and learn lessons. There were stories that happened on that path to elementary school that still influence decisions I make today.

We watch stories on TV, listen to them when we catch up with friends and family and create them with every choice we make.

Each experience teaches us a lesson. There are things we would do again, there are things we wouldn’t. There are things we would tweak just a little.

Seeing your own story allows you to see those lessons and how they influence you. As they are shared, they then influence others. Don’t believe me? Check here to see ways stories influence us not only our personal lives, but in business as well.

The stories we have and tell ourselves determine if we take a risk or not. They determine how much effort we put into an idea or project.

Conclusion

Sometimes we need a break from our normal routine to look back at how far we have really come.

We tend to overlook progress made when we are so busy looking at how far we have to go to achieve our dreams.

Seeing that progress is encouraging, and that hope gives us a renewed vigor to tackle the things that lay ahead.

We can evaluate and change stories. We can grow and make more progress looking forward.

I have great respect for the past. If you don’t know where you’ve come from, you don’t know where you’re going. I have respect for the past, but I’m a person of the moment. I’m here, and I do my best to be completely centered at the place I’m at, then I go forward to the next place.
-Maya Angelou

Call to Action

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