Who Have You Left Behind?
So many of us have people in our lives who, for one reason or another, we have “left behind.” Some of these are people we valued, but with whom we simply lost touch, as we moved forward with our busy lives. Some we had conflicts with, and “let things go,” even though they were people we fundamentally felt a significant bond with. Whoever that might be for you, it may be well worth your time and effort to reach back out to see if the relationship is worth rekindling.
There are more ways to this this than ever, of course. Facebook, Instagram and other social networking sites have many downsides, but one of their benefits is the ability to search for people you may have attended grade school with, worked with, lived next door to or been connected to via any number of other scenarios. So why not reach back today and contact one or two of them to see what touching base might bring?
I say this, in part, because connections between people are anything but random. They are always meaningful and, therefore, potentially valuable. Yet, we often walk on from these connections without much thought and without taking the time to remember and honor them.
If you think of one or two such connections right now, those thoughts won’t be random, either. Whoever comes to mind as you’re reading this blog are people who have been pretty close to the front of your mind, all along, anyhow. After all, it didn’t take more than my brief prompting to trigger you to now be thinking of those individuals.
See, I believe that the seeds two people plant when they connect—even many years ago—can have been growing all along without either of the people watering them. Seen this way, reaching out is like harvesting potentially good and powerful energy.
Might you learn that there is not much to be resurrected between you and the other individual? Sure. But the effort is so minimal that that wouldn’t be so much of a disappointment, anyhow. If nothing else, you’ll be touching base with pages of your life story that are part of past chapters. In reopening those chapters, you may well be rewarded with memories, emotions and even parts of yourself that you haven’t visited for a very long time.
I have been speaking mostly of acquaintances or close, but long-almost-forgotten friends. But it is also true that some of us have moved on from very substantial relationships out of very hard feelings or dramatic disappointments. The passage of time can—not always, but sometimes—heal those feelings and disappointments. Who knows what new and positive energy might be created by touching base with a former friend you jettisoned for good reason? Who knows what bonds might be rebuilt? Who knows what happy ending might be salvaged from the unfinished stories you partly wrote with imperfect characters?
Try it today. Email, text, message or call someone you’ve lost touch with, but remember as a significant person in your existence. You’re not committing to anything other than a new paragraph of your story together. But it could become a whole page, or even a new chapter.
Dr. Keith Ablow
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