Friday, March 30, 2007

How to Handle Regrets

There was a time where I would walk with stooped shoulders staring at the ground. From time to time I would sit feeling melancholy and reach into the sack I had been carrying around. I would pull out a regret; which starts as a lump of coal, from the many in the bag and take my polishing rag and spend some time buffing it. I had done it so often that some of lumps of coal had turned into diamonds. Then I would put them back in the sack and pick it up and carry on.

Then one day I was looking at the sack of coals and diamonds and realized that regret is not meant to be carried. Instead regret is simply a wake up call from living an unaware life. It is a statement that a situation was not handled in a way that is congruent with whom you want to be. It is a gap from your actual conduct of living and your vision of what you want to stand for. It is a reminder that you are not always perfect and there is still room to grow.

So for a final time I took all of my regrets and examined them one more time and asked.

What lesson was I being taught?

  • Not being fully present when someone just needed to get a problem out of their bag. Not to judge, comment or tell how to handle it. Just be there.
  • Not considering how judgmental I was in many situations when I was giving my advice.
  • Not giving my understanding, love and support while someone was working on a their problem.
  • Taking out my own frustrations on someone and then being hurt by their response.
  • .... many other lessons I needed to have.

Today I try to be present at all times and when I slip and have regrets; I immediately take whatever actions I need to to rectify it. Sometimes I can't and learn the lesson and refuse to carry it around. Life is far more enjoyable and I am happier.

Isn't time for you to dump your sack?

7 conversations:

mist1 said...

What are regrets?

Seriously, it's been ages since I've carried a regret around with me. I'm much happier this way.

I'd like to take a moment and thank my therapist.

Peter Haslam said...

Thank you for the comment. Nice to get rid of the baggage isn't it?

Empress Bee (of the High Sea) said...

this reminds me of an na way of dealing with a problem. consider it a potato and you have to carry it around until you can let it go. another situation getting you? another potato. pretty soon you see how many potatoes you are lugging around and you start to drop a few. it is simplistic but it has really worked for me. i had a sack full! ha ha

smiles, bee

ps: i see my friend mist was here, she is a love!

tim said...

I had to deal with a big regret in my life. And I came to the same understanding that you have.

It's hard, but you just have to walk away from them.

Cynthia said...

I also do not like when someone is looking for some ears to tell them his/her life. Lately I simply ignore them, I even do not listen, I know that's a bad tone, but that the only way to get read of story tellers.

Whittier homes said...

Running away from something you regret is not an answer. Working towards rectifying mistakes which you regret will give you valuable lessons in between and will certainly make you a better human. It's not easy as it sounds but the outcome of it is very fruitful.

monterey homes said...

You just have to live with the results of your decisions, not much you can do about regrets except trying to prevent it from happening. When the moment presents itself, we just have to assess the situation thoroughly and make the proper decision, a decision that we can surely live with. Then move on.