Last week I made a video about “No Regret;” and it was not the best message to deliver because there is no such thing as “No Regret.”
In that speech, I said, “I have never had regrets.” The speech was made from my heart. I meant well. But, I have been thinking about that statement for a few days; and I am going to clarify what I was trying to say.
“No Regrets” is a false concept. To be human, one will have regrets---some more than others. However, there are different levels of regret. Some regrets, like wishing you had not worn a certain outfit to a meeting, may last an hour. However, there are other regrets that may last a life time; such as, one who has lost a child or killed someone by accident. Those regrets hurt; and they take time to heal.
Let’s say, A guy out with a group of friends is at a bar drinking and having a great time. And, as the night comes to an end, he is clearly inebriated. His friends see that he might be a little too drunk to drive; but they say nothing. This guy, let’s say John, gets into his car and heads down the road. To himself, he seems to be driving well. He sees his entrance to the highway appear on his right. He notices that the stop sign is right at the entrance of the on ramp. He thinks to himself, “That is stupid! Why would they want me to stop at the entrance to the highway. As he enters on to the highway, he notices a car going the wrong way. As the car approached him, honking and flashing their headlights; he swerved out of the way into another car. When John awoke, he was hand cuffed to the hospital bed where he later learned that he killed a family. A family, the husband, wife, and 2 kids.
John will never get over the regret of killing that family. That regret has changed his life forever. The point that I was trying to make last week is that regrets can put a halt to your life if you let them. In staying with John’s story, I am sure he got serious time in prison; but the question is, what does he do with the regret. Does he go into a deep depression? That would be understandable. Or, does he try to change for the better.
What if John started sharing his story with others in prison for similar violations; or who have struggled with drug addiction. Maybe, John sharing his lessons learned may change a life. It does not reverse the death of that innocent family; but it becomes more productive than sitting in depression.
I know I have situations I regret; but I try to extract the lessons from those situations. I use those lessons learned from regretful decisions to make better decisions. And what I have found, is that I become stronger and wiser. The regret is still there; but it is now being used to change my life for the better.
So, there is no such concept as “No Regret.” However, when you are faced with regret, see if you can find the power to either become a better person or to help someone else change their life.