I’ve written before about regret; those momentary feelings of loss, disappointment, or dissatisfaction with something in our life. I would warrant that all of us have experienced some type of regret in our life. Something we wished we had done differently, or perhaps not have done at all.
It’s my belief that those who say they don’t have any regrets don’t mean they haven’t ever had any. What they mean is that they changed their focus, or their outlook about the specific circumstances. They learned from it, and they turned it into a positive.
Changing one’s focus or keeping one’s focus on what is important is the key to recovery from illness, trauma, or depression, and it is a key to achieving happiness. Focusing on regrets, focusing on what’s not working in our life leads to depression.
My mom always said, “Anyone can think themselves into a depression.” She’s right. Everyone has had things happen to them, or has done things that could get them down. But focusing on the past, focusing on our failings doesn’t help at all.
Choosing to focus on our short-comings, or negative experiences can lead a happy person to a state of depression.
It’s like to clarify something however. All depression does not come from focusing on the negative. I know, because I have never ever been one to live in the past, to blame my circumstances on others, to wallow in self-pity, or focus on what isn’t working.
OK – I take than back. I have had an occasional three-minute pity party. I’ll admit it. But those pity-parties were healing. They really were. A good cry can do miracles. A good cry is a release and a catalyst for change; much like a caterpillar going into it’s cocoon as it begins it’s transformation.
My point is that sometimes depression can be triggered by things such as post-traumatic stress disorder, or true physiological imbalances which can truly make it difficult to “think oneself out of.” Sometimes nutritional support, medication, or counseling are needed. At the very least it may help quicken the healing process.
Now, back to what I wanted to focus on: that word focus.
When you feel those momentary feelings of regret, change your focus by trying one of the following methods:
- Choose to focus on what you learned from the situation.
- Choose to focus on the positive that developed as a result of the experience.
- Choose to focus on the strength you developed. I’ve learned I am much stronger than I ever thought I would be.
- Focus on the skills you’ve developed.
- Focus on the future. Look for the light-at-the end of the tunnel. If you can’t see it, focus on the light of the stars. They are a constant.
- Choose to focus on others. How can your experiences benefit others? Focus on helping them.
- If something isn’t apparently positive focus your thoughts elsewhere. Take a walk and focus on the flowers, the sound of birds, the warmth of the sun.
Change your focus and experience a rebirth of your soul.
Give it flight!
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Posted on Posted on January 26, 2009 under the following category: Believe
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