Embracing Hindsight

By Danielle Hayes

Former NZ Top Model, Danielle Hayes uses the power of hindsight to gain clarity for her future.

Imagine standing in a room, like that of a black hole, it's dark. There are no windows, not even a floor or roof and there are no walls. But this room holds your memories. You take a step forward and memories of the past pop up on a monitor in front of you. You take a step back and watch. Reminiscing, reflecting…

You think to yourself how much has changed, how you’ve changed, how you’ve grown and expanded your understanding. You think of how you could have changed some things back then to get a different outcome. But it was necessary then for you to come to this moment, this result. Through hardships and tough decisions, heartbreak and emotional exhaustion, your trials and tribulations all equate to hindsight.

It’s a wonderful thing.

I regret nothing of my past, I am grateful for all that has happened and the lessons that I have learnt, the good, the bad and the ugly. And I release my pain and suffering to the universe. Hindsight gives you the clarity to close chapters. To recognise what is no longer serving you. Clarity comes after the storm has passed.

"Events in life soon become memories. It is those memories that hold emotion and if we continue to live in the past, where does that leave us?"

In hindsight, there are things now that I see that I couldn’t in that time, in hindsight, I probably shouldn’t have done what I did. In hindsight, if I had left earlier maybe that strange man would never have attacked me. In hindsight, I could have said that differently.

It’s been a few months now since the episode on my mental health streamed online. The response was nothing short of a positive reaction to my strength in coming forward and being honest about my battle with mental health. It is apparent that mental health needs to be discussed with people young and old, whether in schools or at home or in the work place.

A few weeks after the episode, my mental health was hit once more from a bad break up and other life changing events of which I will not disclose. However, it put me in that bad place once more. Though, not suicidal but depressed and helpless. How I managed to get out of that state wasn’t due to my creative outlet like painting, but it was due to disconnecting from the expectations of reality and others. It had to be done. I needed to process and reflect to gather hindsight to make sense of the events that were out of my control and to try and understand why certain things played out the way they did from my perspective.   

Happy to say that as of this day 3/10/2018 I am in a much clearer mindset, I’m happier in my life and where I’m at for the moment. Though, my gaze is looking further beyond the horizon and into the future. All we have is NOW. And what I continue to learn is that events in life soon become memories and it is those memories that hold emotion and if we continue to live in the past where does that leave us? Where does that take us?

Where to get help

If you are worried about your or someone else's mental health, the best place to get help is your GP or local mental health provider. However, if you or someone else is in danger or endangering others, call police immediately on 111.

Or if you need to talk to someone else:

LIFELINE: 0800 543 354 (available 24/7)
SUICIDE CRISIS HELPLINE: 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO) (available 24/7)
YOUTHLINE: 0800 376 633
KIDSLINE: 0800 543 754 (available 24/7)
WHATSUP: 0800 942 8787 (1pm to 11pm)
DEPRESSION HELPLINE: 0800 111 757 (available 24/7)
SAMARITANS: 0800 726 666
NEED TO TALK?: Free call or text 1737 (available 24/7)

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