How to deal with life’s painful moments and learning to cope with the emotions they bring us.
There’s nothing worse than feeling shame or regret over an event that occurred in the past. It can be a missed opportunity or the way we handled a situation that causes the regret.
The mental torture we impose on ourselves by replaying events over and over and beating ourselves up for what happened is unhealthy and unrealistic. Struggling with difficult emotions caused by painful memories is normal, but when they become so persistent that our current lives are affected, it’s time to take action.
Persistent feelings and thoughts of regret can have a paralyzing effect on your life. Taking a step back from your thoughts and looking at regret in a different light can help you cope.
Here are a few ways to begin doing that.
1. Open Up To Change
Nothing in life is permanent, it’s a fact. Look to nature for further proof that change is an unavoidable part of life. Seasons change, life is created and and destroyed in an endless cycle that continues regardless of anyone’s efforts.
Opening yourself to the inevitability of change helps you gain an appreciation of the present and makes it easier to let go of the past. By lessening your fear of change, you also let go of anxieties or expectations that could be holding you back from living.
2. Learn To Truly Forgive Yourself
It’s hard for many of us to forgive those who’ve hurt or wronged us. It can even harder to forgive oneself for mistakes made in the past. Approach your feelings of regret with a gentleness and begin to forgive yourself.
This is a great way to begin letting go of the past and beginning a new future. Everyone makes mistakes. Reminding yourself of that, in addition to forming less harsh and unrealistic expectations of yourself will also encourage forgiveness.
3. Take A Closer Look At Relationships
Are the people you call friends there when you need them? Can you rely on them to come through on important matters? If you’re going through some turmoil and find that friends didn’t come through, it may be a good time to reevaluate their place in your life and remove any unhealthy relationships.
For other friends, it may be the right time to strengthen bonds. Get back in touch or communicate about any issues you may have had with them. By taking these first steps, you can encourage growth and movement.
4. Stop Thinking In Black And White
Mistakes and regrets aren’t necessarily bad. They often present us with challenges that propel us to makes changes or move forward in life. Looking at regret in this way helps us put the past behind and focus our energies on the opportunities of the present.
By seeing mistakes as a necessary stepping stone in our growth, we learn to better embrace the present moment and focus our energy into more constructive channels.
Cindy Nichols is an addiction specialist and treatment advisor and specializes is drug rehab referrals for Recovery Now Tv.