How do memories make us feel? How do they affect our future? And what can we do to make the most of them? These are questions that I’m constantly thinking about and trying to find the answers to, so I thought I’d share some of my thoughts in this brief blog.
How do memories make us feel?
I think memories can make us feel emotions that we’ve had hidden for a long time. I recently re-connected with some old friends on facebook, and memories flooded back of times spent with those friends when we were at school. When I started to reminisce about some of those times I felt happy, young again (not that I’m that old!), wise, and lucky to have a lovely past to look back on. I then felt excitement, joy and nervousness about what the friendships could once again become – and with that a myriad of questions – when might we get together, would our families get on, could the friendship we once had fit into our new lives?
All of these feelings and questions made me think about the clothes and keepsakes that I create. Are these the feelings and questions that people have when they take the time to dig out their clothes with special memories and re-connect with them? Do they feel excitement at finding them in the first place, joy at the memories they hold, and then nervousness about what the clothes could become in their new lives? I think they do, and this is part of my job to talk to people about the memories in their clothes, the way they live their lives now and how they want these items to be welcomed back into their lives.
How do they affect our future?
All of this is backed up by research, which shows that people who look back and reminisce feel more grounded in the present, and ‘can contribute to a brighter outlook for the future.’ (Medical News Today, Nov 2013) Which is good news for me, and good news for you! So next time someone admonishes you for looking back and living in the past, just quote this research as positive evidence that a little bit of nostalgia is a good thing.
What can we do to make the most of them?
I wrote quite a few blogs last year about making the most of memories, so I won’t go over them again, I’ll leave it to you to take a look back (if you’ll excuse the pun). But maybe you should take some time soon to dig out some old photos, pull out some old clothes, or re-connect with an old friend or two, and just see how it makes you feel. I’d love to know!
I’d really love to hear how you feel when you spend time reminiscing – leave me a comment if you can.