Perspectives: Regret and Hope~ When to Hold On....When to Let Go
Perspectives: An Introduction
What we think and how we feel about things, is defined, not by the things themselves, but by our perspective of things. Everything that comes before us, is filtered through our perspective of things.
Regret~ A Fast Track to Disappointment & Despair
What if you had a second chance at life? What would you do differently? What mistakes would you be extremely careful to avoid? What opportunities would you be certain to grab, next time?
Please don't waste one precious moment of your time, thinking of answers to these hypothetical questions. I promise, it would be less painful to grab hold of a baseball bat and whack yourself hard at least four times. Once, for allowing yourself to have the fantasy of a second chance at life. Once, for clouding the gift of today by drudging up yesterday. Again, for erroneously thinking that your mistakes might not have been your finest education and finally, for entertaining the thought that the life you had was not exactly as it was meant to be. Worthwhile and complete.
To dip your cup into the well of regret and drink of its poisons is to set in motion, a slow and very painful demise. Demons drape themselves around your spirit and spread their toxins into your bloodstream, wreaking havoc upon your every thought and deed. Self-pity and remorse are more lethal than a dagger lunged through your heart.
Give yourself permission to refuse to walk this rocky path. It leads only to a dead end.... no room to turn around...no way to escape. Please, do not take another step. Stop, look up and take my hand. We will walk another route, my friend, to brighter places that offer gifts of love and wisdom, where every human can see gratitude and peace more clearly.
Let us analyze REGRET, one last time.
This is so difficult to explain....I feel something is missing......something vital. I look around me and I wonder why everyone looks so happy....why life just seems to fall into place for them.... What did they do, that I haven't done? Are they better or just luckier than I am? How is it that they could have made all the right choices......and I'm kicking myself and feeling stupid.....Could I be a loser? That's it, I'm a damned loser.
Good. This is perfect. We're off to a great start, because those self defeating, negative thoughts, are a typical example of what regret looks and sounds like. Pretty depressing, not to mention, a lesson in futility. I should know. Trust me. I do know.
We're not going to minimize this issue nor fluff it off as nonsense. An enemy with this sort of power and control over our psyche requires that we muster the courage to face it, stand up to it and fight. After all, happiness, peace of mind and our very life depends upon how we ultimately walk away from this encounter and move on. It is about moving on.
I know what you may be thinking at this point and I understand. You are regretting...You probably should not have married him/her. The fact is my dear, you did. It's not much of a stretch here to assume that at that time in your life, you were ready for a commitment and all the pieces seemed to fit. You'd met the person you fully intended to spend your life with.....and raise a family, own a quaint little house, all inclusive of a wonderfully happy atmosphere. I'd bet you even put up a white picket fence.
There were ups and downs but you never suspected a fall that would end your life as you knew it. But it came... that official-looking envelope arrived, .. containing your final divorce decree. Hold on, wait a moment. How did this happen?
Take a deep breath and open with courage. It's disguised as a packet made of paper.The reality is, it's a monster, come to slap you in the face, punch you in the solar-plexis, take your breath away and leave you weakened. The monster has many names, Doubt, Sadness, Anger, Remorse, but all nicknames aside, his birth name is, "Regret." You have little choice at this moment and time but to stand up to the torment.
It's all up to you, how far back you'd like to dig. I'm merely here to observe. Go for it. Give it all you got. I should mention though, I already know the litany of questions and the self doubt & hate you will pour on this pain. Today, it's about you....and the rest of your life.
What went so wrong? What happened to us? Why weren't we strong enough and smart enough to make it work? Was it me...or...? Were we really in love....or never meant to be? Did we bail out too soon?I didn't know this would hurt so badly.
It does hurt and I need to understand. What's the answer? What are the damned questions?
I should have known better. What was I thinking? I didn't listen to my intuition.... We did love each other. I know we did. Did we talk enough, laugh enough, spend enough time together? We drifted apart. I saw it coming and I just ignored it. How could I do that? I feel empty....lost... I'll never get through this.What do I do now?
This is not a means to an End.....but a way to begin anew.
Human nature, as it is, creates the rich soil, in which to harvest regret. All the emotions that overwhelm you, are a perfectly normal response to disappointment...to what seems to you, to be weaknesses within you, which allowed your flaws, to become full-blown failure.
Know this please. There is nothing wrong with you. Surely, nothing so wrong, it cannot be understood and repaired. You are not a hopeless, confused and broken human. You are amazing and have healing power. What you need, you already possess. You need only to believe.
When you come to the realization, that throughout it all, it was you, who made your choices, with good intention, for the reasons that were valid, at a specific time, in your life....you will quiet the chaos and accept. You will send your ego off into hibernation and truly love yourself again, without question or doubt. You'll know that the only thing that is over, is one chapter of your book. The chapters to come will give you answers you can learn from and live with.... a desire to turn the pages with hope and assurance. You'll hear theses words with your heart and mind...
"There can be no regrets, for I am valuable and know my worth. Where ever I have tripped and fallen, I've stood back up and faced the world. I forgive myself and those who hurt me. There is no room in my life for regret. I will not give it breeding ground. I cannot let it win. What has happened is over. It is in the past....in a prior chapter, where I must let it go....then, I will turn the page with hope. My book of life is so very precious and not to be destroyed, because of one unpleasant chapter."
Speaking of that next page....while I have your attention, Let me introduce you to a good friend of mine, whom I believe will become your good friend, as well. Her name is, "Hope."
Sunrise, the HOPE of a New & Better Day
Children hope, incessantly. I hope I get a brand new bike for my birthday.....I hope that Dad will take me to the beach today. I hope when I grow up, I can marry a Prince..............
Do you recall all the hoping you did when you were a child? I do. I remember how intensely I believed that all I had to do was hope....and it would happen. I would cross my fingers and close my eyes...and make a wish. I hope, I hope, I hope...oh please!
Adulthood brings reality along with it and oh, what rude awakenings. Hope is no longer a verb....it creates no magic. Hope, in it's maturity, becomes a noun. It is something that we learn to have and protect, nurture and strengthen.
At all times, we are given choices. We can choose to fall into the depths of sadness, guilt and fear, or we can hold onto the hope of happiness, freedom and courage. Blessings of hope are ours to accept, but once accepted, we have work to do.
Hanging on to the hope of a healthy and productive life, is only the first part. The rest of course, is in our self motivation and steadfast determination. That wonderful thing called, hope, is what keeps us focused and knowing that nothing is impossible, as long as we persevere....as long as we are willing to hold on tight.
Perhaps all this work, seems much too overwhelming to consider, but think about this. In the days to come, you will need to heal. You cannot go forward, broken and battered. You'll need that friend to hang on to and help you move on. The one you can trust to bare your soul. It can only be Hope, for Hope's strength cannot weaken by itself.
I've kept you long enough.
I'd like to leave you with an Inspirational Prayer, I learned many years ago. It was given to me by my dear, departed Dad. He covered it in plastic so I would keep it with me, in my purse, at all times. He wanted me to know, that although he could not protect his little girl forever, he hoped this prayer would lift me up in times of deep sadness. It has and it does. I have hope in my heart, it will comfort you, as well. Let go of regret. Hold on to hope..
"May you know you are blessed with the power of Hope
May you live with wisdom to enlighten the world.
May you see your greatest of dreams come true.
Be powerful in boldness and courage,
Letting go of all fear and regret.
Always love with a loving and resilient heart.
May your smile be contagious and your happiness, outrageous,
And above all else, May your Hope shine brightly enough
To light up the World".............So Be It.