7. You limit your self-confidence when you waste your life on regrets
In life things don’t always go the way we had hoped and sometimes we may even wish that we had done things differently.
It is always good to take a long hard look at the impact our actions have in our life and on other people because you gain a number of insights doing this kind of self reflection.
Once you learn from your mistake the next step is to look at what you will do differently next time and how you can learn from your mistakes.
Then finally, the thing to do so you don’t waste your life on regrets is to LET IT GO and forgive yourself! Let go of the past, focus on what’s great in your life right now, and create a compelling future for what will be.
Every minute, hour, week, month and year you waste on blaming, shaming, criticising and regret does nothing but reduce the happiness you can experience in your own life. It robs you of your passion to move forward and look at “what’s next?”
The question here is “What stories can I give up about events in the past, the giving up of which will help me to move forward?”
I regret that allowed myself to get in a financial mess and I had to sell my house but it was the only way to get myself out. I didn’t end up with any cash.
I literally started again at zero but at least I had the opportunity to do that.
For months afterwards as life continued to move forward and I looked at how I was going to come back from this I wanted to focus on what I had lost but I knew doing that meant I would miss the opportunities in front of me.
I remember a quote from someone that went something along the lines of “when you keep looking to the past and longing for everything you have lost you miss out on what’s ahead, in the future.”
I knew that I wanted to rebuild and I knew I had the strength and ability to do that. I focused on everything great that will come from not having a mortgage like paying off most of what I owe and being free from all debts/financial ties.
At one point I literally had no financial responsibilities – I am not talking about the little things like gas, electricity and water – I had to pay those but the big things like a car payment, or a cell phone payment and a mortgage. All of it was paid off and gone.
That was a huge blessing to me and I felt completely free.
It is a feeling I have wanted to keep with me over the years because I know it will leave me free to travel without having to use things like my house, car or other commitment to weigh me down and keep me stuck.
My children are my only tie to being in the UK right now and I love that freedom too – the thought of belonging no place but everywhere.
Take a long hard look at the business deals that didn’t work out, the partner that you didn’t support, the people that “did stuff to you.”
Are you ready to let it all go? This is not about blame.
Maybe what they did was wrong, but when you continually focus on it that will not make it right, or change what happened. Is it time to find another way?
Forgiveness is a big key here. Forgiving yourself and forgiving other people. In the past I refused to look at this area because as far as I was concerned things happened that were not my fault and I refused to say I forgive the person.
The more I thought about these events the more they ate away at me slowly. Refusing to forgive really can limit your own personal growth and here is an important lesson that I discovered.
When you forgive someone you are not saying “what you did was okay” you are saying “I am going to release my need to keep focusing on this”
Forgiveness is more for you than it is for the other person. It will help you to stop wasting your life on regrets.
You can choose to say you forgive them or not – that is your choice but what you do when you forgive is release all the internal anger and mental anguish you are experiencing when you continue to think and talk about different events that have happened to you.
This is a huge area so you may want to think about reading a book on forgiveness as a way to help you because it really is a big part of being confident.
You really can’t expect others to forgive you if you can not forgive yourself and you can never truly be at peace if you hold on to all those negative thoughts and the anger they bring up inside you. At some point you have to let go.
Learning about the power of forgiveness was a major milestone for me.
Sometimes an event will still repeat itself in my head and I have to forgive them, forgive myself and then forgive myself again for continuing to think about it.
I release it and I let it go because I know that holding on to it is a little like drinking poison that fills my body and expecting the other person to die.
Forgiveness is for you. You forgive so you can let go.
When you let you your life is filled with a sense of peace and tranquillity that you will never believe and that I can never describe.
It is something worth working towards so you can experience it too. Especially if you are wasting your life on regrets.
Lesson 8: Lack of self-worth