Let It Go, Man!

Regrets are an inevitable part of life.

No matter how hard we try to avoid them, we all make mistakes, miss opportunities and fail to live up to our own expectations.

However, I’ve come to realise that regrets don’t have to define us. In fact, I try to live my life without regrets entirely, by embracing the present and focusing on the future. As time has gone on and I’ve wished and wished I could change the past, I’ve stomped my feet, cried and screamed at the universe. I try not to do that any more.

First and foremost, I try to practise self-compassion. It’s easy to be hard on ourselves when we mess up, but beating ourselves up only prolongs the pain. Instead, I try to treat myself with kindness and understanding. When I make a mistake, I remind myself that I’m only human and that everyone has these moments. I also try to think about what I’d say to a friend who was in the same situation. Would I be as hard on them as I’m on myself? Probably not. By treating myself with the same solicitude I’d show to a friend, I can forgive myself more easily and move on.

Another thing I do is to reflect on my mistakes and try to learn from them. When something doesn’t go according to plan, I take some time to think about what went wrong and what I could’ve done differently. This helps me avoid making the same mistake again in the future.

Of course, hindsight is 20/20, and it’s always easier to see what we should have done after the act. But by reflecting on our mistakes and analysing what we could’ve done in another way, we can make better decisions in the future.

I also try to live in the present and not dwell on the past too much. It’s natural to feel regret when we think about past mistakes or missed opportunities. However, living in the past can prevent us from moving forward and enjoying the present. Instead of focusing on what could have been, I try to focus on what I can do now to improve my life and make the most of the present moment. This means setting goals, trying new things and being open to new opportunities. By living in the present and focusing on the future, I’m able to let go of past regrets and move forward with a sense of purpose.

Finally, I try to surround myself with positive people who lift me up and support me. It’s easy to get bogged down by negativity and self-doubt when we’re surrounded by people who don’t believe in us or who constantly bring us down. On the other hand, being around positive, supportive people can help us see the good in ourselves and in our lives. By building a strong support system of friends and family who believe in us, we can forgive ourselves more easily and move on from past mistakes.

Of course, forgiving oneself is often easier said than done. It can be hard to let go of past regrets and move forward, especially when the mistake is particularly painful or has long-lasting consequences. However, it’s important to remember that we’re all human and that we’re all going to falter at some point or another. The key is to learn from those incidents, forgive ourselves and move on with a renewed sense of purpose and determination.

If you’re struggling to forgive yourself, here are a few additional tips that might help. Practise mindfulness. This can assist you in staying present and focused on the here and now. By doing this, or simply taking a few deep breaths when you feel overwhelmed, you can calm your mind and regain your sense of perspective.

You should also consider writing things down. I find it very helpful to journal regularly, so that it is easier to assess your own feelings. Even writing this column is cathartic for me. It allows me to identify many things I’m feeling, process the memory and then sort of move on.

– Anne Hambuda is a poet, writer and social commentator. Follow her online or email her at

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