We all have them, the nagging thoughts of how we wish we would have or could have done things differently.Regret by definition means, “to feel sad, repentant, or disappointed over something that has happened or been done, especially a loss or missed opportunity.” What do we do with these pesky thoughts that creep in from time to time? Thoughts that keep us up at night. Thoughts that tell us we we’re stupid, we made bad decisions, we failed, we were a disappointment, etc..
Well, unfortunately we can’t change our past choices or actions, nor can we change the consequences of them. However, we can change our attitude toward our past actions. After all if we live long enough there are surely going to be some regrets of our past, as no one was born perfect.
Regrets are just that, regrets, we regret what we said or did. Regrets are always from past actions. We can’t change them. However, we can learn from them and help ourselves make better choices today and in the future. We can also become more responsible and in control of what we allow ourselves to think, say and do, being always mindful of the word and actions we choose to take. In a way, regrets are good. Having regrets means that we recognize the error of our past ways and are sorry for them. If we don’t have regrets we may simply not care how our actions and/or choices have affected others or ourselves. Regrets can be powerful reminders and motivators to fuel our future in a different direction.
When we feel ourselves riding the “regret” merry go round- we need to jump off, and remind ourselves that yes we may have performed actions or made choices that made us ” sorry,” but they don’t have to define who we are. We are much more than the past choices that we have made. We need to forgive ourselves and move on. Building a more positive future begins with the choices we make today. Eventually the choices we make today will become our past. Hopefully our regrets will fade, being replaced by positive memories. Life can be hard and there is no way to know how to live it other than by trial and error. The trial and errors of life teach us along the way. We are important and valuable and we need to remind ourselves that part of being human is to error. In summary, love yourself, forgive yourself, learn and live a better tomorrow. After all, “the worst mistake you can ever make is one you don’t learn from.” Therefore, maybe a mistake is worth making if you learned from it!
~ Teri Storm