Looking back to gain perspective may at first seem counterintuitive, but stay with me on this. Think of the rower in a single scull, their back is to the finish line, they are looking back from where they came from on the previous strokes to stay aligned and moving in the direction of the finish line. We can also gain perspective by looking back on where we have been – that perspective comes from experiences good, bad, and indifferent.
Perhaps it is a function of my advancing age, but I find myself looking back on past experiences more often these days, not to be nostalgic but to gain a clearer perspective on what I am doing now. I do not think it is coincidence that I keep discovering people, events, ideas, and concepts that have shaped what I am and what I do. Some of these ideas and people I have let fall to wayside, but reflecting has enabled me to revisit ideas, dust them off and use them today because they are just as relevant and, in some cases, more so.