Regret is a feeling that every single one of us will have to face at some point of their life. Since regret isn’t a very pleasant feeling, one might wonder whether it will last forever or not.
Regret lasts as long as you want it to last. If you’re constantly recalling actions that you regret and not do anything about it, then your regret will last forever. However if you deal with your regrets in a proper way, they will vanish and you will learn from them.
With that said, it’s up to you to decide how long your regret lasts. I’ll mention some tips later in this article on how you should deal with your regrets.
But first, what are the consequences of regret on your life.
Effects of regret on your life.
Regret in general isn’t a bad thing.
Regret is our mind’s way of assessing our actions, admitting that we have done wrong and pushing ourselves to try and fix it.
The problem becomes when we let regret control us instead of using it to fix our problems and ourselves.
If you do not control your feelings of regret, then they’ll take over and they might lead you to a life full of depression.
Regret can also ruin your life. It can destroy your happiness if you keep the things that you regret in your mind.
So in other words, if you let regret control you, then your life will pause and your time will be wasted.
Think about it. When you regret something forever, it means that you are focusing on the past and dwelling on it. While doing that, you will be wasting any new opportunities coming towards you and you will lose your current time.
Instead of dwelling on the past, you need to think about the current moment only. If you don’t do that, then you might regret wasting your time regretting things that you shouldn’t have regretted. And the loop keeps going.
So, how do you do that?
How to deal with regret
1- Express your regret
Expressing your feelings in front of others is extremely important. Trapping any feelings that you have inside you can cause your body a lot of serious physical and mental health issues.
So do not worry about expressing your regret to some people that are close to you. If you regret something a lot, it’s time to call a close friend and talk to them about it.
This could be helpful for many reasons.
One, you will have expressed your regrets to someone and the burden of trapping your feeling of regret inside you will be gone.
Two, your friend might show you things from different perspectives and you end up learning that you didn’t even do wrong in the first place.
This ‘psychology today’ article sums up why you should never bury your feelings really well.
You’re not the same when you bury your feelings and you view the world differently. Take that burden away from you and call a friend to talk about it.
2 – Try and solve your mistakes
Let’s say that you’ve expressed your feeling of regret in any possible way. You now need to think about whether or not you can solve your mistake.
Are you regretting hurting someone? Invite them for a coffee or a dinner and apologize for what you have done.
Are you regretting not studying well for your exams? Learn from your mistake and force yourself to study harder next time.
Are you regretting a missed opportunity? Let it go and make sure that you think more about your upcoming opportunities.
What if you can’t fix your mistake?
3 – If you can’t fix your mistake, then let it go
We all make mistakes in our lives. The question becomes what are we going to do about it?
If we can’t change the mistakes that we have made, should we keep regretting them for the rest of our lives or should we learn from them and move on?
It’s easier said than done to just forget about your mistakes and never regret them again, but you can train yourself to do so.
Whenever a feeling of regret comes to you, try and remember a positive thing that happened in your life. Just train yourself to think of something good whenever the feeling of regret is hunting you.
You can distract yourself from feeling regret by going on adventures, seeking new things, setting new plans and so on.
To summarize what you have just read
Regret can last for as long as you want it to, and you shouldn’t let it control you. To fight your feelings of regret, you can express them to a friend, you can try and fix your mistakes or you can just learn to let it go.
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