Are Regrets Reallly Such a Bad Thing to Have? | Life Love and Hiccups: Are Regrets Reallly Such a Bad Thing to Have?
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Wednesday, 6 April 2016

Are Regrets Reallly Such a Bad Thing to Have?

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This little dude reminds me of Yoda which is quite apt as this is a bit of a Yoda style post.

I think the word 'Regret' unfairly gets a bad rap... don't you?

I mean - in this day and age where so many of us seem to aspire to live a blissed out, free spirited and zen kind of enlightened life, I can't help but feel like we are led to believe that 'regret' is a dirty word and something to be ashamed of.

With all this talk of 'living with no regrets' we are unconsciously being conditioned to see regrets as some kind of scar that one bears, a scar that should only be discussed in whispered tones behind closed doors... because surely no truly happy person could possibly be holding on to any regrets.

Screw you Nike or whoever the hell slapped 'no regrets' onto T'shirts and made a motsa out of us regretful peeps.

Screw you for making a fortune out of something that was so bloody simple any one of us could have thought of it and we regret that we didn't because now we aren't the squillionaires we could have been.

Screw you for making me regret that I don't regret my regrets earlier.... or something like that.

Moving on because I am so just confusing myself now.

I've heard it all before and smacked eyes on a million and one inspo quotes that all tell me to 'live with no regrets', 'regrets are nothing but wasted thoughts' and here's a pearler - 'say what you feel, do what you think, give what you've got but never regret'.

All those quotes actually make me do is question if I am a normal human considering I do have regrets that I am neither ashamed to admit to nor embarrassed hang on the line for all the world to see.

What the hell's wrong with admitting we have a couple of regrets in life?

I have a closet full and in my humble opinion, thats not such a bad thing because every single one of those regrets I have stored away are lessons learnt.

Look at it this way - if you haven't experienced regret then how can you possibly know where you may have gone wrong along the way?

Surely, to have no regrets at all, zilch, nada, never had one yada yada - possibly questions the existence of a conscience?

I don't know... maybe I am totally off the mark here but I don't really see living with regrets as such a bad thing, especially if they are a reminder to me to make different choices in future.

My top three regrets in life lead me to ask - are regrets really such a bad thing?

Sure, what caused me to have the regret in the first place might evoke a pang when I think about it, but the changes I make as a result of that regret is in fact their value.

Let's use my top three regrets as an example.

1. Not dancing with my Dad at our wedding.

Oh man this one kills me because he was right there and we didn't have that dad / daughter slow dance moment I always imagined we would. The lesson in that for me, is to not ever let a precious moment pass me by. I'm gonna seize it whenever I can, whilst I can.

Thankfully, even those his legs would probably no longer allow him to dance, I can share other things with him and make other memories that will last me a lifetime.

2. Spending too long doing a job I didn't love.

Because I didn't believe enough in myself to leave the corporate world earlier than I did, I regret wasting a good 15 years doing something I didn't truly love.

But that's OK, because I am doing what I love now and the lesson I gained from that regret is to not waste time on things that don't make me happy.

Believe in myself.

Take more chances.

Trust that I can do it.

And finally...

3. Not travelling the world with my husband before we had kids.

But that's OK, because there is still time to do it and being a little older and wiser and more financial now than we were then means we will perhaps have the opportunity to see more and experience more than we could have afforded back then.

Maybe our kids can come with us... and their kids... and we can experience it all together. Maybe there was a sliding door reason we didn't travel back then....? Who knows?

One thing I do know is that the me that I was in my early twenties, probably wouldn't remember half of the experiences anyway because my memories would be clouded with hangovers.

Are regrets really just valuable lessons all wrapped up in an ugly word?

What do you think about regrets?
Is it really such a dirty word?
Do you have any regrets you care to share or are you truly free from any regret at all?