Don’t dwell in the past, but it’s perfectly OK to bring cheerful memorable moments to the present and the future.
In a taxi with Takashi, my thoughtful and well-mannered colleague from Japan:
Takashi: “I sneeze, when I am in a closed space with heavy-scented females. Thanks for not wearing any perfume.”
Pam (with a laugh): “I am wearing perfume.”
Takashi (astonished): “Really? I don’t smell anything.”
Pam (with a bigger laugh): “It’s called Baby Powder. You can’t go wrong with Johnson’s and Johnson’s Baby Powder. Trust me, I am vain and have tried my shares of perfume, even the Classic Chanel No.5. I still come back to J & J Baby Powder. To me, it’s an ultimate perfume.”
Takashi (with amusement): “Why?”
Pam (looking through the window with a smile): “Because it brings back memory.”
When I was little, we had an unwritten rule in our house: all kids were bathed before dinner time. A bunch of kids, including cousins and neighbors’ kids, tend to bath together. With 3-4 kids in a big wooden bathtub, we could play for an hour until someone came to the bathroom yelling and kicking all of us out. I remember my mom or auntie going back and forth between kitchen and bathroom to make dinner and dry us out.
Then, they’d dump a big chuck of baby powder all over our bodies, while we were giggling and laughing. Oh, that fresh smell!
In our pajamas, all of us would run into the kitchen and be ready for dinner. I can still hear us laughing and running from the bathroom to the kitchen. The wooden bath tub is long gone now. My family moved over 15 times before I turned 25. All of my cousins and childhood playmates grew apart.
I don’t have any childhood memorabilia left, except that smell of baby powder.
There is a fine line between looking back and dwelling in the past. Bringing up cherished memories to share with your loved ones and adding ‘flavor’ to your present and future moments can help you maintain a positive attitude.
But don’t excessively dwell on the past and forget to live the present. Use your past to help build a great future!