Regret is a bitter pill to swallow. Most people make decisions or fail to take advantage of opportunities that end in painful outcomes or feelings of missing out.
Regret creates disappointment. Who wants to reach the end of life’s journey with a soul overflowing with sadness and missed opportunities?
Here are six healthy ways to deal with regret so you don’t end up in a dark place of sadness and loss.
Choose to be grateful by focusing on your blessings. Remind yourself of all the wonderful things you have in life that money can’t buy like family, friends, shelter, and food. Your list can be as long or as short as you like. By being grateful, you stay focused on what you’ve gained instead of on what you’ve lost.
Keep the Big Picture in Mind
Life isn’t one singular event; it’s a process that, for many, spans decades. Sure, people make mistakes. And bad things happen. Even mistakes and unfortunate events can sometimes lead to good outcomes. If not, strive to use them to learn about yourself and life so you can grow and be a blessing to someone who desperately needs the gift of encouragement.
Express Your Emotions
Some emotions are empowering. Others work against us. While it isn’t always easy to take charge of our emotions, strive to release any feelings that don’t serve your life or dreams. Have you been beating yourself up? Stop! Move forward by choosing to focus on your goals and dreams and the good things you have to offer. Does punishing yourself serve any good purpose? No! So, forgive yourself and move on, unlocking your best life in the process, so those things don’t happen ever again.
Failure and regret can be great teachers – if you’re teachable. So, make that unfortunate event count. Don’t let it go to waste! Keep living your life with passion, applying what you learned. Shine. Be a light! Don’t let feelings of sadness and regret turn your soul dark.
“If Only…” Stop Reliving the Past
Shackling yourself to the whipping post of “If only” and “I should’ve” will not change what happened. It just poisons your present and ruins your future. What’s worse? Making a mistake in the past that triggered a painful outcome and dealing with it, or carrying that mistake into the future and letting it ruin your joy and influence for years to come? Please, do yourself a favor and stop living in the past. The best way to honor and redeem the past is to be a person of value from this day forward who lives to make a difference by being a light of encouragement and hope for others.
Live for What Matters Most
You know how the story ends for people who center their lives around work, possessions, money, and popularity to the bitter exclusion of their dreams and loved ones. They die with regret. When that day comes, and you know you have very little time left on earth, remember, no one has ever said, “I wished I wouldn’t have spent so much time with my friends and family,” or, “I shouldn’t have spent so much time, money and energy on making my dreams come true.” No! People almost always say they wished they had more time with their loved ones and would’ve spent more time and energy on their dreams instead of work. Defeat regret by reordering your priorities today; live for what matters most.
Although you can’t control everything that happens to you, you have a lot more control over stuff in your daily life than you might realize, especially regarding how you spend your time and who you choose to spend it with. So, don’t wait for your life to magically become happy or fulfilling. Take charge and live a happy, fulfilling life starting right now. That’s what you can have and deserve – a life of healing and joy and not one that’s filled with endless pain and regret.