If Only: To Regret or Not Regret?


Have you ever wished you had a time machine to go back in time and change something? Hmm, maybe even to change many things! Maybe those opportunities you’ve missed? or “I wish I hadn’t shouted at him, then maybe we’d still be talking” or “If only I’d put more effort in, I’d have got better results”.

Actually, which do you regret more: action or inaction? How many times have you caught yourself thinking “Oh, if only…” – wishing that things had turned out differently? What would you do differently if you could do it over?

Regret = a waste of time, emotion and energy. Regret clouds our thinking and stands in the way of being happy in the present. Wallowing in disappointment and dissatisfaction doesn’t change the past.

So, what to do: regret or not regret?

Make the decision not to be hampered by regret, instead leverage the regret to your advantage.

Here’s how:
Accept the past – it’s made you who you are today. (Can’t argue with that can you?) Whatever happened – happened for a reason.
2) Unfold regret and find the “tucked away” wisdom. What can be learnt from the experience?
3) Harness the lessons learnt. To prevent similar regrets, what will you do differently in the future?
4) Let go of the pang of regret. And Move On!

Warning: Give yourself some slack, and don’t beat yourself up about the past. However, don’t be too easy on yourself either, otherwise you’ll just repeat the same mistakes again.

Remember: It’s no use crying over spilt milk. But if you don’t recognise the importance of the spilt milk you may just end up spilling more later on. So, don’t cry over the spilt milk, take action to keep regret out of your life.

At the end of the day, you need to be able to look at yourself in the mirror and be happy with who you are.

Live purposefully. Live meaningfully. Live life fully!

This blog is part of “The A – Z Challenge”, shifting one negative habit a week into a positive. For more info on the challenge, click here: https://www.innerspace.org.uk/challenges/a-z-challenge.php

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