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Midnight ‘What Ifs…’

Very few things have been written on this blog lately, but that doesn’t mean that there haven’t been things I need to write about. Just fewer things I want people to read.

I started this blog so that it would be a place for me to process things the best way I can – by writing about them. I write when I travel, when I’m emotional, when I’m struggling and when I have amusing experiences which allows me to give a voice to the thoughts and feelings swirling around in my head.

Today is one of those days when I feel the need to write. I’ve been thinking about some things in particular lately and that’s when it dawned on me. As much as I hate to admit it, I do have a few regrets. There are things I should have done or not done, decisions that were wrongly made and for some strange reason they’ve been keeping me up at night. I tried talking to my close friends about it and their advice was don’t dwell on your regrets’ or ‘don’t think about it, it’s over and done with’.

But you see, pondering over your regrets is not necessarily a bad thing. I’ve read so many articles and blogs and stories that cast regret in a very negative light. They discuss regret in the context of feeling that past choices were poorly made, and that one’s life would have been so much better had different choices been made. Some people wallow in pity and self-loathing over it and such regrets are harmful, I agree.

But I see it slightly differently, all regrets really stem from something you feel sorry about that did or didn’t happen in the past. Dig a little deeper and it boils down to one thing – a decision you made. And that’s all regrets really are: bad decisions. So to want a life completely without regret is quite unreal since that will imply that all you have to do is make good decisions all the time. No one makes the correct decision on every choice, all the time. At least I never do.

I agree that not thinking about these few regrets would have ensured that I slept better this weekend, but by thinking over them I’ve realized how much I’ve learned through my experiences. I’m sure that I haven’t made the last of my bad decisions yet but I know that I won’t make the same mistakes again, that’s guaranteed. Of course my thoughts are tinged with a slight sadness of things that could have been different, but that’s the way life is, you accept it and you move on. There’s no good in wanting to change the past. Sometimes you’ve got to accept that the past changes things in you. And that could be a good thing.

I think it is rare to live completely regret-free, but it is an excellent ambition! There is certainly no point dwelling on something I am powerless to change but I can be double sure that I’m making the right decision the next time some significant experience comes my way.




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