Society tells us live with no regrets. This is quite the mantra being that we are all human. Being human means mistakes will be made that may be regretted. (I’d love to sit here and say I’m perfect and have no regrets but then you’d peg me as a liar…and I would be hahaha) Things may be said that are regretted. Shoot life happens. I personally don’t subscribe to the no regret hype. Regrets, in addition to other things, have helped me evolve into a better person. Hear me out…
The definition of regret is to feel sad, repentant, or disappointed over (something that has happened or been done, especially a loss or missed opportunity). It is just me or would having these types of emotions push a person to be better in order to avoid these feelings in the future? (Ahhh you see where I’m going with this lol).
My personality in past years was very (o my goodness the internet references 16 different personality types 😵) apparently type “C”. Years ago, maybe a year after starting at my current organization, I applied for a supervisor position. During the interview process I sabotaged myself in an effort to escape possible confrontation (from coworkers with much more tenure). OK OK OK you twisted my arm so I’ll tell you…I announced to a panel of superiors that if someone with more tenure applied I’d rather they receive the job! (Wait what? Why did you say that? You have, at the time, a child to take care of! Honey you need all the money you can get!) Yep that was regret yelling angrily at me lol. Needless to say I did no get the position. Disappointment set in mostly because I could not fathom why in the world my mouth would say something like that lol. After a while my regret turned into motivation. I deserved that job, I would have been good at it and most importantly the panel wanted to give it to me (found that out later). The regret of the missed opportunity made me work harder to secure any other promotion without apprehension! I earned it, deserved it, worked for it and finally secured it 3 times over after that 1 regretful interview.
Broken or lost relationships often are sources of regret. Although for the most part (in my opinion) my actions and feelings were warranted, I verbalized it inappropriately to be an adult. As each argument came to an end regret set in. This person was a friend, despite our extremely turbulent relationship, he was my friend. Perhaps if I had stepped away from each situation and assessed it before I lashed out we could possibly be gracefully coparenting our son. As opposed to blocked calls and limited text and email conversations. Having this regret forever reminds me to think before I speak and act. Now I’m not perfect but I am mindful. In events when I waiver I am quick to sincerely apologize along with consciously making every effort to refrain from habitually having to replay the scenario throughout the relationship. This has helped in friendships, family relationships, work relationships, etc.
Please understand that allowing regrets to ruin or rule your life negatively is unhealthy not only for you but the people around you. This is not to say that every regret will turn into a life lesson, although if you allow it to it is much more beneficial to your mental health. (Speaking from experience I am no therapist lol)
Live peacefully with your regret. There’s no constitutional rule set in stone that commands you to live with no regret. Quite frankly you may be surprised by what your regrets can teach you!