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How to live with no regrets


This is a guest post by Daniel Offer. Daniel manages an interesting Facebook application called Emoinstaller. Emoinstaller allows you to add extra Facebook emoticons as well as Facebook smileys to your Facebook chat experience in just a couple of clicks.

Do you tend to beat yourself up by bringing past personal mistakes or shortfalls into the present? Do you tend to live with a lot of regrets or wish you could have a do-over in life?

If so, you aren’t alone. Most people have experienced embarrassing moments and have made a few mistakes along the way—it’s part of life. Unfortunately, it’s easy for thoughts of past negative experiences to pop into a person’s mind when they least expect it which can cause havoc for living successfully in the present.

While reliving past mistakes can seem like a form of penance, rehearsing regrets will never repair things or help you feel better. Constantly re-living bad experiences can chip away at self-confidence and undermine new risk taking opportunities.

When less than perfect things happen in your life, you can choose to either dwell on them or let them go. There’s a lesson to be learned in every experience, good or bad.

Since going back in time or having a do-over isn’t an option, you’d might as well learn the lessons and move on. You’ll be mentally healthier and emotionally happier if you do.

How to Let Go of Regrets

Since you can’t change the past, try to let go of it and the corresponding regrets with these tools:

• As soon as feelings of regret and self-doubt appear dismiss them, unless there is something within your power to repair a situation.

• Don’t base what you do today on mistakes of yesterday.

• Don’t treasure hunt through your past, or anyone else’s, looking for problems.

• Don’t use your past as an excuse.

• Forgive people. Every person is a product of his own past that has little to do with you. Don’t get wounded by another person’s stuff.

• Give up habits that aren’t serving you well.

• Stay away from toxic people such as those who are still reliving the past and attempting to bring you into it.

How to move forward

Everyone has the opportunity to start fresh every single day. If you are committed to stop living in regret and to begin living a fresh life, consider your answers to these questions:

• How will you say no to things you should say no to, and yes to new adventures?

• What habits need to be broken?

• What negatives might crop up in the future and how are you prepared to deal with them?

• What or who might you need to let go of?

• Who do you need to forgive?

Choosing to change your thought processes and habits makes a positive difference.

New Steps to Take

Picture the life you want to have. How will it be different starting today? How can you make today more meaningful so that you don’t regret missed opportunities tomorrow?

Here are a few ideas to consider:

• Appreciate your job and the people therein more, or make a leap for the job you’d rather have.

• Clean up your language and temper.

• Close the office door and take a vacation without a cell phone or laptop.

• Entertain more.

• Exercise more often.

• Hug family members frequently.

• Invest in a personal hobby.

• Participate in charities, church events or say yes to other invitations instead of isolating.

• Say kind words to your family members and others.

• Spend more time with your spouse and family.

• Stop complaining or criticizing. Adopt a happy spirit.

• Visit extended family more.

You can’t have a do-over in life, but you can try to live your best life now. Let go of regrets. Be a guardian of your own life by saying no to events or people that might cause you to have future regrets.

Be intentional about carving out important habits now so that at the end of your life you won’t look back in regret. Be confident of your choices and decide that if you do make a mistake, embarrass yourself or have something else go wrong that you will learn from the experience and pick yourself back up.

That is how to live a life with no regrets.

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