Our parents taught us how to speak. They held our hands when we just started walking. They were always there for us to help us understand what the world is and how to live in it. But they didn’t teach us one thing; they didn’t prepare us for adulthood. They didn’t give us a list of “What is Right and Wrong”. They left it all for us to figure out. And now we see how it turns out for us. It isn’t easy. But it is there, and we, like all other people, have to handle it.
We can all recall situations we would like to not remember or better erase from our past. We all have regrets. We regret wrong decisions, stupid mistakes, spontaneous actions and lots of other things we see in our little list of “What Went Wrong”. There is no point in saying that it has a huge impact on our everyday lives and the way we look at things. They say that mistakes are meant to happen so we can learn from them. But how can you learn anything if it’s all mixed up in your mind. As I grew up and came closer to finally being considered a young adult, I started ignoring the thought that I was a total loser (which I suppose was the reason I made so many mistakes), and I began analyzing my each and every bad memory that made my life so miserable.
Finally, I came up with a list of two groups. I called them “The Ones I Regret” and “The Ones I Appreciate”, and I’m sure every person can relate to this and eventually figure out their own mistakes and make it a bit easier to handle.
The Ones I Regret
…regret for not having. We always say: “I wish I didn’t do this”, but more frequently, we say: “I wish I actually did it. Why did I miss the chance?”
We always regret what we DIDN’T do, rather than thing we DID. We always ask ourselves “What if…?” and leave that question hanging in the air because we can never know what would happen if we were a little bit braver.
So, there is a lot of regret. Regret of not being honest (avoiding a conversation that could change your life), regret of not following your dreams, regret of having that fear which limited your opportunities. And there is also the regret of things we left behind.
Things like favorite hobbies or close people we no longer talk to. Regret comes from not doing, and there is no changing the past, but you can work on the future. Take chances! Do not be scared or embarrassed. Fear can always hold you back, but your confidence can move you forward.
The Ones I Appreciate
Appreciating a mistake… sounds absurd, doesn’t it? It is hard to appreciate something that only caused more trouble. But when you think about it, making a mistake is an action. If we made a mistake without realizing it was a mistake (or maybe we did it on purpose), then we probably really wanted to do it, otherwise, we wouldn’t care. I don’t want to say that “Hey, it is your life, you can do whatever you want to”. But really… there is no list of mistakes.
No one can define if what you did wrong was a mistake. You have to define your mistakes on your own. See if they really were wrong or if you think so based on others’ judgement.
When we leave the past behind we often want to go back and feel a bit nostalgic. But how can we if we haven’t figured out our mistakes? So, do not ignore them, but think more thoroughly about what and why something went wrong, and I promise you, you will figure it out!