• Tricia Szameit

Should Have, Would Have, Could Have

As a psychic I get certain pieces of information that can be difficult to dismiss. This message is important for most everyone because we have been in a world-wide crisis, not just personal ones. I have learned when messages are so similar from one read, or mediation, to the next it's time to speak up. One message that has been overwhelmingly clear focuses on Regret.

There is no need to deny you are regretting something right now. It's one of those feelings everyone of us experiences. We actually need to have regret to learn how to avoid making similar mistakes and a little is just fine. The problem happens when we let it get out of control and can't decipher the difference between our own self-talk, those messages from our family or society, and those of true reality. An article in Psychology Today from back in 2012 talks about the long-term damage regret can cause, physically. Regret can get out of control but you can take that back.

Wikipedia defines regret as "a conscious negative emotional reaction to an undesirable situation. Regret is related to perceived opportunity. Its intensity varies over time after the decision, in regard to action versus inaction, and in regard to self-control at a particular age." There are a few things here we can break apart and hopefully understand how to reduce feeling intense regret as we head out into this new world.

The definition starts with “A Conscious Negative Emotional Reaction.” Did you realize regret is a conscious reaction? You are reacting to a lack of action and you very aware the feeling is regret. This means you can turn that around by being aware of your thoughts though. By taking control and turning your thoughts into those of self praise or focusing on an achievement can reduce the garbage left behind by any regrets filling your mind. Nothing is as bad as we make it out to be, ever!

It goes on to define regret as being related to a “perceived opportunity.” Perception is awareness of your decision to take action or not on an opportunity. Projects, 'should have done's', and other thoughts are what happens when you judge yourself for not meeting your own highest standards. Have you looked at your regret with a different perception? Try one with the eyes of someone who is a friend who doesn’t judge you as harshly as you do yourself.

“It’s intensity varies over time, after the decision…” Realizing when the thoughts, tied to a regret, are not as intense can help you be aware of when to work on them. Write down when regrets come up. Later, when it doesn't seem like such a big deal, review your list and write this new perspective down. Review your response when it kicks back up (if it does). Usually this will stop a regret from annoying you again because your positive perception becomes stronger by writing it out.

"When the next shift happens don't waste time looking back on what you think you should have accomplished already this year. "

It further explains regret is different at different ages. Regret teaches us to take action and be responsive to situations throughout our lives. We learn when to take action and when to wait. Regret shows us how to move forward making decisions that count. It teaches us letting go of the little stuff will keep our loved ones closer. Regret is our perception of our own lives and can be difficult to face at any age. The key is to not allow it grow to a level of abusing ourselves with it.

The world had slowed down. We relaxed and learned to enjoy some simpler activities and times at home or alone. We chatted with some old friends and relatives, played games, went for walks, and leaned into our home lives in ways we have not done for a long time. Life has been slower for the majority of us. When the next shift happens don't waste time looking back on what you think you should have accomplished already this year.

We are heading back into a phase of continuous motion. A time of working under new, sometimes more stressful, conditions than those we left behind. Before you head back to your ‘new life’ try not to take regret over things left unfinished or un-started. Do not carry this regret forward into your future.

As you read this, stop and focus on what you did accomplish through a difficult world-wide experience. I cannot address each individual’s accomplishments have been but are ten ideas to get you thinking about what you have completed:

  1. You survived! You survived the fear, anxieties, stresses, and overwhelming feelings of the last few months.

  2. You were patient and understanding with people you interacted with even when you didn’t realize it.

  3. You slept better and rested more than you have in a long time.

  4. You went outside and experienced nature like you haven’t since you were younger.

  5. Even when you worried about your work, income, or business you developed plans for your future success. Plans you may not even realize yet.

  6. You overcame potential severe depression!

  7. You shifted your thinking from what was to what is to come.

  8. You turned a loss into a win.

  9. You reconnected with family, friends, and neighbors like never before.

  10. You networked and started something new and significant.

*A note on number seven. If your thinking shifted and looking forward comes with anxiety, or fears over the future try this little trick. Imagine you have a container in your head. Visualize it and make it special, just for you. Now take that fear, the one attached to your anxiety, and drop in inside closing the lid tightly. You can take it out when you want but leave it in there until you are ready to work on it. It won’t go anywhere without you and no one has to know about it. Revisit it when you feel more relaxed and try to meditate on it if you can. The future can be intimidating to some people.

The world has changed for all of us, no doubt. Times have been difficult and will be for a little longer. Just remember that the things you have regret over should be measured by the reality of the entire world around you. Look forward to what you want to accomplish moving and adjust your perception of the past. Experience the future knowing you did, and continue to do, your very best!

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