Nostalgia Is Good, but Living in the Past Isn’t

Sometimes I think people live too much of their lives in the past. Whether that’s in an attempt to relive their “glory days”, clutch tightly to their old ways, or they’re just too lazy to change for the better, I honestly believe that holding onto a past way of life is unhealthy for growth, happiness, and stimulation of the mind.

While this is clearly just an opinion on the ways you can go about living your life, it’s something I find to be detrimental about myself and some of my friends, so it’s no wonder that I’m so steeped in this opinion.

One of the things I often see amongst my friends is a desperate longing to return to college. While I can understand their point of view (considering I often miss the ease of life when at college and wouldn’t mind returning for another degree some day), there’s a point where you have to see that there’s a difference between wishful thinking/nostalgia versus actually trying to live out those days again. From bar crawls to excessive drinking and ordering take out and putting off responsibilities, I have a handful of friends that aren’t quite attempting to move forward in their lives because they’re so caught up in their pasts.

The thing is, it’s completely fine to relive those days from time to time by meeting up with old friends and doing what you used to do when younger. For example, I just recently had some buddies over to go out to bars and then come over to my place to play video games into the late hours of the night. We had a lot of fun and definitely want to do it again, but we all understood that this was something that happens from time to time. It was great digging out some old games from my cardboard boxes in storage, but those cardboard boxes are meant to stay in storage for a reason: accessing them every now and then to use, but not to make a staple in my life.

I think the world and its inhabitants would be a far better place if everyone simply agreed that we need to focus on the present situation first, the future second, and finally the past from time to time. Unfortunately, what seems to happen is that everyone is keyed in on their pasts and intertwining it with their present day situation, and no one seems to consider the future for whatever reason.