We all slip into the doldrums from time to time on the “I could have done that, I should have done that, I would have done that” and we think of all the reasons why we didn’t. Some we view with regret, and others with mixed emotions. It is my job here today to tell you to stop beating yourself up.
One of the worst things you can do is continually visit your painful past. Notice I said painful? All the great things we did in life so far are also in our past, and yes, it’s fantastic to reflect on all the good times, the fun times, the vacations, the parties, the celebrations. What it’s not good to do is visit our pain memories.
Your brain is powerful
Did you know that your brain is so amazing, that every time you talk about a past experience, your brain will give you the exact SAME emotions and feelings you had on the day it happened? It can’t tell the event didn’t just happen. Seriously. So, it is probably in our best interests not to talk or rehash painful memories once we know that this is what our body does to us. And now that you’ve read that last paragraph, you KNOW.
Women are a bit different than men, (well, actually a LOT more different) but different in that we need to talk about stuff. Not just once, not just twice, but maybe ten to fifteen times. It’s how we get it out of our system. Guys on the other hand can talk to their buddy about it once, and it’s done. Finished. Over. (In most cases) But for us females? Nah, we need to recite our stories to all our friends, and not only once, but multiple times.
So, in knowing that about myself, what I can do to limit pain in my life is to CHOOSE to not talk about painful memories. If I need to vent, there is pen and paper. Or felts and cardboard. Or a typewriter, or an ipad. If we need to talk about it, (vent) that means we need to say what we feel. And I’m telling you that it doesn’t need to be to another person. It can be written down, or dictated onto a recording. Whatever works for you to get it out of your system. It’s okay to have a friend to talk to – we usually all have one friend (or parent) to whom we chat with, but if we have to find three, four or more to express our displeasure, then we are never going to heal from our hurt, all we’re doing is looking for validation for our pain.
People struggle with their past pain all the time. The reason why they do, and can’t seemingly get over it, because they keep TALKING ABOUT IT! It’s destructive. You are continually poisoning your body with adrenaline each time you relive something that makes you hurt or angry.
Don’t let anger fester, or take root
Don’t let your anger fester. Get it out! Release it. Realize that no matter what happened, it is now done. Over. Finished. No amount of being upset or angry about the past can change it. It’s already gone, never to return.
Stop beating yourself up then with the “I should have done this, and then it never would have happened.” We should not be beating ourselves up about this. We don’t know the future, we had NO IDEA the events that would be triggered. You can’t keep focusing on that, because you can’t change it. It is useless, futile. Don’t waste your energy on what you could have done differently, because you are not ever going to be transported back in time.
Beating yourself up
Stop beating yourself up with “I could have done that”. Well, yes you could have, but you didn’t. Accept it. Stop beating yourself up with “I would have done that, but…..”. That is blaming another person or circumstances, instead of taking responsibility for yourself and your choices. You are the boss of your body. You. No-one can make you do anything, unless they are holding a gun to your head, and even then you have a choice how to react. But you get my point.
No-one can make you sad, mad, rebellious, happy, (you name it). No-one can. Events can happen and you choose to be all those things, but it is your choice on how to react. You can’t blame bad drivers for making you angry. They certainly did not. You chose to get angry. It is always your choice in how you respond to things that happen to you. Even if it’s not fair or not right, you don’t have to choose to be angry. You can choose to be accepting, and realize that the world is full of terrible drivers, but you don’t have to choose to get angry.
Stop finger pointing
When you start looking at your life, and you see areas of pain, you need to clean them out. Get rid of the hurt. Get rid of the blame. Stop pointing your finger at your ex. Stop pointing your finger at your boss. Stop pointing the finger at your disobedient child. Stop pointing the finger at your parents. STOP already. Stop blaming, and start taking responsibility for yourself.
STOP the coulda, woulda, shouldas. You could live there the rest of your life, and you will ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS feel empty inside. You are pining for something that can never happen. It never will. Look forward, there is so much more to life than the coulda, woulda, shouldas.
Forgiveness is the most important thing you can do. Forgive yourself for what you COULD SHOULD OR WOULD have done differently. Forgive, let it go. Then forgive the person who hurt you. And move on to better things!
It’s that easy. Choose to stay angry and bitter, focusing all your attention on your painful past, or choose to forgive, and have love in your heart for others.
Make the correct choice
Make the right choice. Choose life, and freedom from pain.
NO MORE COULDA SHOULDA WOULDAs!
Banish them now forever from your mind and daily thoughts.
I leave you all with the challenge below: