The New Psychology
It is not prudent to look to the past in order to heal and/or thrive. In fact, digging up the past can be a very addictive and insatiable search for wellbeing.
We are best served by working to cultivate the future we value by mentally rehearsing our desired aims so profoundly that we feel - both emotionally and in the sensations of our living being- as if they are already happening. Then we act out what we actually want instead of re-enacting what we are trying to avoid. Whatever is a true obstacle to our life's desired unfoldment will bubble to the surface. Then, it can be worked because it is present.
The past is actually not real, even it if was real, if we go seeking the past we may likely unearth obstacles that would have been better left alone, thereby making them real problems!
We are also wise to beware of the addictive nature of our problems and the ironic ways in which we are actually attached to being damaged.
If we can make a clean break and just let go of what arises in the present that is best. If we can't immediately surrender what arises as obstacle(s) to the life we value then we work with it in the arising present at the levels of mind (pictures, images, thought-words), energy (thought-words, emotions, breath) and body (sensations, breath, actions, physical tension, behaviors).
A lot of people take this very empowering view and implement it in an aggressive manner. That doesn't work and only leads to frustrated impotence. What does work is courage, dedication and persistence combined with patience, acceptance, love and wisdom. (And remember we can and do get to the point where we love to suffer, so courage is upfront because eventually we do need to let go).
Overall, the aim is to move what had become stuck and is therefore festering (which is why it is arising much like a pimple coming to a head), to clear the present of the past, so that we can be open to the future we choose. Rather than continuing to drag the past into the present, we are reversing what most consider the normal flow of time: past > present > future, to instead: future > present > past.
We can not fix, figure out, heal, or reveal the past. We can try. But we will only ever try and never succeed because the past is dead and gone. Instead we can look to the future and work with the present so we can bury the past and give life to the living.