Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Regrets...How much time do you give to them?

My apologies for missing a new post last week.  I was otherwise occupied.  Smile. 

Okay, Okay.  We all have regrets -- y'know those actions, words or thoughts we wish we could undo or take back with a big, screaming, "Do Over!"  Remember, when you were a kid and it was as easy as that -- yelling, "Do Over"!  Unfortunately, adult life really doesn't work like an etch-a-sketch and "poof" the regret is erased.  I guess the big question is how to move on from thinking about them, or thinking about how to correct them, or how to ease the pain we experience every single time we revisit them.

"You absolute bonehead, how could you have said/done that?" -- DCR

Another question...is it really the actual words or actions we regret, or the feelings we experience when we recall them, like one of my particular favorites when having a discussion with myself on the topic..."You absolute bonehead, how could you have said/done that?"  I'm thinking it is a bit of both.  We are sorry we did/said whatever it was and we really don't like the feeling that comes when we think about it -- the memory makes us feel even more miserable.

Sidetrack...Do you know people who make regret into a victimization art?  They are so good at it, they make you feel badly for them and kaboomski you are suddenly part of their whole regret scenario and you continually try to help them feel better.  How goofy is that?  It is like a heroin addiction..."Ooooh, but it feels so good to feel bad." Eeeeeuuu.  I know people like that and I am finally smart enough (TYG) to run as far and as fast as I can.

Okay, okay, back to my original point.  How much time and thought do we need to give to our regrets before we learn from them and move on?  Aha! Did you notice how I was sneaky there and threw in the "we learn from them" part?  A regret can play on and on like a loop on a tape, until it looms so large, that it morphs into something that becomes a part of us.  You need to recognize it if that is what you are doing.  

There are things we do or say that we really do need to face, admit and fix if we can.  It happens.  There is my point in a nutshell...it happens.  At one time or another, we all do and say stuff that is incredibly stupid or selfish or mean or any variety of the icky sorts of things our mommas told us not to do (if you are lucky enough that your momma passed along some wisdom).  Here comes the part I like...

Number one, if you are still doing something similar, stop doing it and number two, if you have the opportunity to say to the other person(s) involved that you are sorry... be big enough to say it and mean it. If you aren't still doing something similar but the thought of what you did keeps coming back like bad marinara sauce, tell yourself you are sorry you were so stupid and move on.  You have the power to do that.  You have the power and permission to have those conversations with yourself.  You can recognize your own poor behavior and feel sorry for it and fix it.  If you can't give yourself permission...I will.  Smile.  

I am getting to a juncture here.  Don't spend your energy or your life in the regret zone.  My God, people, can you give yourselves a break?  Stand up and take responsibility and then...wait for it...move on.  Think about it this way...Life is a big ol' school ground. We don't know everything at the beginning...we live it and learn as we go.  If you make a mistake on a math problem, do you wring your hands and cry for the rest of your life (unless you are me, the whole school quarter), or do you erase it and figure out how to correct it and move on?  Let's vote for the correct it and move on part. What is it you need to do that?  No, really, I am asking you a question.  You have to put some effort into this whole deal -- as in -- think it through.  The most amazing and wonderful thing happens when you face the regret head-on and take responsibility for it and fix it (if you can) and let it go...you are free.  No more sadness, no more feeling like you are a bad person, no more snugglin' up to the bad feeling like it's a warm blankie.  You are free.  Imagine the relief, heck, imagine all the time and energy you will have to put into happiness or joy or new people or inspiration or creativity or...are you getting the idea?

You can wrap yourself in the stranglehold and twisted comfort of regrets or you can make the choice to open yourself up to living the life you really want.  Profound...no, difficult, not really.  Look your little self in the eye (mirror is best) and give yourself permission to be whole.  It is not that scary.  You can do this...

With respect,

1 comment:

  1. Just have to tell you that you have helped me understand this concept on a whole new level. We are given experiences in which to learn lessons, what we learn varying from self forgiveness to outwardly forgiveness, or it could simply be learning compassion, among infinite possibilities...
    Through your guidance I was able to say Sianara to my burdening thoughts, which opened the door to the healing garden. :)
    Excellent blog. :)


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