Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Forgive The Regret And Move On

Do you ever look back on your life and wish you hadn't done something you did, or wish you had done something you failed to do? I think we've all been there. Mistakes and regrets. And you may live your whole life agonizing about how different life would be had you made wiser choices in the past. But every decision you've made was based upon your knowledge at the time, and maybe the path you took was necessary to move you to creating something better.

Until age 47, my life was a series of mistakes. Broken marriages, a nomad life, work I hated, wandering through the years with no place to go. Then my mistakes pushed me into being so fed up, there was nothing I could do but find a different path for survival. So I quit waitress work and went back to school, earning two degrees in Clinical Social Work and Psychotherapy. Every time I felt like giving up, memories of my past mistakes kept me going. And my life changed. I still made mistakes, but I didn't allow them to put me back in the pit of despair. Now when I look at my past, I'm grateful for those early years I discounted as worthless.

For the most part, you create the quality of your life, but your mistakes don't need to dictate how you will live. Everyone makes poor choices at some time or another, but what you do with them is important to your future. And getting stuck in regret, self-criticism or blame can sabotage where you want to go now. So one of the most important choices you can make is what to do with your mistakes.

You can harbor mistakes with regret and stumble over them through life, or you can deicde to let them go and forgive yourself for being imperfect. By the way, in my whole life I've never known a perfect person. But I have known some pretty great imperfect people. So you don't need to keep beating yourself over the head and getting into "what if" because you stumbled in the past.

Look inside and see what's in there. Any guilt or self-condemning thoughts? Talk to them. Tell them you've had enough, and you're telling them goodbye. And forgive that inner child part of you that's been suffering for too long. Give her/him a hug surrounded with loads of love and approval. And when you make your next mistake--and you will--do the same with that mistake and all the others that follow. You deserve a life free of regret.

I wish you peace with your past.


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