Wednesday, April 11, 2018

The art of not regretting

I don't know why but I tend to see regret as a bad thing. I mean it is really alright to regret, isn't it? Not all of us get it right the very first time. Not all of us are happy about our decisions. Especially those that do not end well. So when something does not go our way, we end up saying, 'dang I should not have done it'. The more you think it, the more you start hating yourself for it. It is like staying on the gas stove longer. Till you literally burn.

It is human tendency to justify an error. An error noticed only in hindsight. An error that was made but with good intentions. But then the road to hell they say is also paved with good intentions, isn't it?
I am no different. As in, not all of the calls I have made in life are.. well how do I put it.. successful.  Some people I have trusted have walked out. Some ideas have fallen apart. Money lost. Time wasted. You get the picture.
In my world, regret is more negative than anything else. Involves blame-game for a bad outcome. Almost similar to blaming someone else for a choice you made or a call you took. The what-if games are never-ending. What if I had not fallen in love. What if I had studied better. What if ... You see what I mean.
I actively try to avoid regret because it leads to more pain. It means carrying the burden of the decision and its consequence on your shoulder for the rest of your life. I really do not want to deal with it that much. I'd rather look at it as something I did and it didn't pan out and so yes, I wanna move on.
Most people take regret quite badly. Regret for many turns into self-sympathy. Drowning in sorrow. Mellowing in the sad victim state. Fairly self-destructive.
Unless you are one of the few who can use this energy to do something better and right the next time, regret can suck the life out of you.
I want to be proud of the choices that I make, good or bad. When I wonder what else would I have done if I could go back in time, I strangely do not see myself doing anything else. I have this thing inbuilt in me to see the best of what has happened in a very strong way, I guess.
This regret has turned out to become a bad disease that takes up most of the mind space. It could go two ways though. One - the person turns out to make better decisions having learned from their mistakes. Or another - not taking any more life-changing decisions and turning into a paranoid nut.
The place I am today is because of the choices I have made, good or bad. People I have met, crazy or normal (whatever that is). Even if I remove certain elements, I might not have made so much progress as I have today. 

Call it a defense mechanism. Or silver lining.