Regrets, I've had a few (29 July 2013)

Who do you blame? A lot of people are held back by regrets, and this question is often very illuminating. Answering it, and dealing with it, can be a first step in dispelling regrets and getting on with life. I was struck recently by the woman whose husband was killed on his way to play the organ in their local church at midnight mass. She had every reason to blame the two men, now serving long sentences, who apparently chose her husband at random to murder in a breathtakingly callous and violent attack.

But she has forgiven them. Her Christian faith seems to have been central; and I, and a lot of others, don’t have that. Yet it is surely something within her too that means she can deal with the blame game, and move on.

Hopefully, you don’t have to cope with something so dramatic and awful. But if you do have regrets, and you still blame others for giving you those regrets – a partner, family member, school friend, or colleague – try the method below:

Think of the significant people in your life who you blame for causing you pain and hurt; make a list of them, and start a systematic process to thank all of them. Use email, telephone, letters, Facebook, whatever seems most appropriate.

This can be very difficult with those that did give you pain, even when you learned from that pain. Put yourself in a place and state of relaxation, somewhere on your own, and think about each of these people. Maybe you have very negative feelings about them – gradually let those feelings go as you remember the positive things you gained from knowing them. If physical thanks is not possible, thank them in your mind.

Now you can move on, and leave regrets behind.

All the best

Graham
 

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