Positive Ways To Embrace Nostalgia
Many of us in the Lehigh Valley experience feelings of nostalgia throughout our lives, and these feelings can grow as we get older and the world continues to change. Nostalgia can be a bittersweet emotion. When getting nostalgic, it’s important to embrace this feeling in a positive way rather than let it become a negative emotion. This article explains more about exactly what nostalgia is and how to keep it positive.
What is nostalgia?
Nostalgia is an affection for the past. It is spurred by happy memories of people, places, and things that we have experienced throughout our lives.
While nostalgia can bring feelings of warmth, it can also bring feelings of sadness. We may have a longing to re-experience something that can no longer be experienced because certain key people, places, or products no longer exist.
Such a feeling of loss can be similar to grief and can make us depressed. However, nostalgia doesn’t have to make us sad. In fact, there are many ways in which it can cheer us up if approached with the right attitude. Reconnecting with happy moments from our past may even help us move forward in some cases by helping us form new goals and reconnect with old friends. This is the way we should all be embracing nostalgia.
What are some positive ways to embrace nostalgia?
By thinking about how you interact with past happy memories, you can turn them into a source of joy rather than a source of sorrow.
Find things that you can re-experience. There are some happy events that you can relive, including visiting locations that still exist or talking to friends and family members who are still alive. Meanwhile, songs and movies can be re-experienced fully at any time. The Internet has made it much easier to track down even some of the most obscure old movies and songs. Look beyond the likes of Netflix—you can watch old classic movies here and at other similar niche sites.
Write down your memories. You can keep a happy experience alive forever by writing it down. By writing them down, you can also share your memories and make you feel less lonely in your experience. Some people write entire stories of their lives just to make sure the happy memories live on. Try to remember how you felt and your impressions when you write them down. That will make the memories more vivid!
Connect with people who have had similar experiences. There may be living friends or relatives you can still talk with in order to reminisce. This could even be a way to reconnect with people who you have drifted apart from. Got no one to share your memories with? When it comes to products and places, you can always find people to connect with on the Internet. There are forums, social media pages, and entire websites dedicated to certain types of nostalgia where you can become part of a community.
Take inspiration from life’s achievements. Every happy memory is a sign of a life well-lived. If your current life feels unrewarding in comparison, think about how you can create new goals to achieve similar happy memories. Don’t make the mistake of trying to recreate happy experiences that cannot be recreated; instead, think about how you can form new happy memories. Think about the things you haven’t done and how you may be able to build upon your experience. This could include visiting a familiar place and trying new activities that you didn’t get to try last time.
What are some negative ways to embrace nostalgia?
It’s important to understand how nostalgia can become a negative force so you can avoid this type of nostalgia. This typically involves dwelling on the sense of loss and not moving forward. This includes:
Idealizing the past and overlooking the bad parts. It’s easy to block out the things about a past period that were bad to the point where the past looks perfect. This could include focusing on the highs of a past relationship and not considering the lows, or simply overlooking the day-to-day struggles that you once had to deal with as a result of backward social attitudes or inferior technology. Not everything has changed for the worse.
Refusing to try new things. You shouldn’t let nostalgia prevent you from trying new things. You may miss musicians who are no longer making music or you may miss places where you once hung out, but have you tried exploring new music or tried finding new places to hang out? Only by trying new things can we develop new happy memories.
Trying to accurately relive past memories. It’s important to remember that you can never accurately recreate a happy moment in your life. Quite often, the reason that a moment was so happy is because the experience was new and unexpected. This is why it’s important to always try new things and use your happy memories as building blocks. You can try to recreate experiences to rekindle that sense of joy, but you should also expect and accept flaws in your re-experience.
So, go ahead and let those memories gently carry you back, but learn from them and use them to create, document, and share new experiences and create new memories that will be ready for your next trip down Memory Lane.