Regret is a feeling of sadness, repentance, or disappointment over something that has happened or been done. It is hard to live mindfully and peacefully when we have regrets. Regret can be helpful when you are able to learn from it, so that it can help shape your future actions. If you continue to live in the past, and ruminate over what went wrong, rather than trying to figure out how it can help you today, then that is when it can be a problem.
I don’t really like having regrets, and I don’t have any at the moment. Regret is living in the past, and not really coming to acceptance of what happened. Regret steers me away from being mindful and present, so I try not to focus on what went wrong, or didn’t go as well as I liked to. Ruminating over doesn’t help me. Learning and growing from it does.
Life isn’t perfect. Mistakes will happen. Life doesn’t always go the way you planned. What you thought was the right choice back then, may not see like it now. It is easier to judge in retrospect. There may be aspects of my life that didn’t go the way I wanted. I may have made choices that weren’t great, but there are aspects that are good learning experiences. A choice can either be good for you at the moment, or teach you a lesson for the future. There is no place for regret. We don’t know everything. Experience helps us learn.
You live. You learn. At that point in your life you thought it was the right decision. We grow. We change. Regret shows that you had a learning experience. Try not to wallow in self-pity or blame. You are here now. You can always make better choices in the present moment. Don’t allow your past to hold you hostage. Set yourself free by being present. Accept the past. Appreciate your ability to learn and evolve. Use regret as a tool to learn and gain strength. Not as a tool to punish yourself.
Just remember, people regret they didn’t do, rather than the things they did do. Life is an experience. There will be bumps, mistakes and failures. That shows you are truly living.