"Neither a wise man nor a brave man lies down on the tracks of history to wait for the train of the future to run over him." — Dwight D. Eisenhower
Rarely is dwelling on the past seen in a positive light. Nor should it be. Thinking too much about times gone by typically keeps your mind--and life--stuck in neutral (and maybe even shifts it into reverse). However, those who don't remember the past are destined to repeat it.
Another way to think about it is to picture yourself driving an automobile. You obviously need to keep your eyes on the road in front of you, but you also need to check the rearview mirror to know what's going on behind you. You can't afford to ignore either.
Let’s face it: we all dwell on the past from time to time. That’s okay—we’re human beings with emotions. As we live life and experience it to its fullest, it’s only natural that we sometimes cling onto what once was.
Whatever the past was, it’s gone. There is nothing you can do to change anything that has gone before and so you must turn your attention to the here and now. It is hard to resist the allure of dwelling on the past. But if you want to be successful in life, then you have to turn your attention to the future.
There's merit in being aware of your past — not dwelling on it but learning from it. The past holds the building blocks of a better future.