Feeling the sting of regret with my actions toward my son this past weekend, has lead me to writing this post. It’s a reminder that we have choices at any given moment. My moment of taking out my anger on my son from my interaction with my husband (who was feeling the smothering from our son earlier) created this pivotal moment. There’s always a reaction when collision of energies come together. Was I at my best? Not even close. I regret what I said and yet, was it strong enough for me to make it better? When I ask, “what would someone who loves themselves do?” I hear “BE NICE.” But being nice, would mean I need to be connected. I need to recognize that we were all living in a moment of disconnect. Seeing THAT view, allowed me to move through it with a little more grace. I talked myself through many thoughts and eventually could see that I was bitten by my own venom of regret.
What is regret?
Regret is one of those experiences in life that we feel heaviness and shame from. According to the dictionary “It is a negative conscious and emotional reaction to personal past acts and behaviors. Regret is often expressed by the term “sorry.” Regret is often a feeling of sadness, shame, embarrassment, depression, annoyance, or guilt, after one acts in a manner and later wishes not to have done so.”
Regret is distinct from guilt, which is a deeply emotional form of regret — one which may be difficult to comprehend in an objective or conceptual way. In this regard, the concept of regret is subordinate to guilt in terms of its emotional intensity. By comparison, shame typically refers to the social (rather than personal) aspect of guilt or (in minor context) regret as imposed by the society or culture (enforcement of ethics, morality), which has substantial bearing in matters of (personal and social) honor.
It is also distinct from remorse, which is a more direct and emotional form of regret over a past action that is considered by society to be hurtful, shameful, or violent. Unlike regret, it includes a strong element of desire for apology to others rather than an internal reflection on one’s actions, and may be expressed (sincerely or not) in order to reduce the punishment one receives.
Regret can describe not only the dislike for an action that has been committed, but also, importantly, regret of inaction. Many people find themselves wishing that they had done something in a past situation.”
Guilt – Shame – Regret – Remorse
Do you believe you can learn from these experiences? Do you believe you have to carry them like a life sentence? Do you hide in shame about your choices you have made? When do we break free?
What would Someone Who LOVES themselves do?
This is an opportunity for healing. This is an opportunity to not let the past hold you prisoner. This is when you say, I am ready for change. I allow my past to not be my future. But HOW do we do it? How do we set ourselves free? I can explain some things here, but Teal Scott’s videos say it by far more clear and accessible to new tools.
The most important thing to understand about these feelings is they are based on your past awarenesses. You can only use what you know. If 20 years pass and you have grown, you can see that who you are now and the lessons you know now, were not available to you 20 years ago. Holding on to something because you didn’t have the tools you have now makes no sense at all. There is healing that can happen here. Truly believe it.
This can apply to any aspect of the above. Regret is just a smaller venom to the bigger guilts in your life. We have choices moment to moment. And in every moment, there is an opportunity to change your view. It only takes one moment to have a new awareness. One that makes us never go back. Each moment is a gift. Each moment there is renewed spirit within us to heal, to grow and expand and let go of our past. Past actions included. This could be minutes ago or years ago. It’s all about learning the steps to do so. Please take some time to watch these videos. The second one is the one that really helped me transform some past hurts. I believe that if you take the time to say I’m worth it, you will find new meaning in your life. This moment will forever change you. As Nike says….”JUST DO IT!” I’m counting on you to make the right choice. 🙂
Understanding Guilt (Part 1)
How to Let go Guilt (Part 2)