I have not been nor will I ever be a perfect person. No shocking truth revealed by that statement. But I was contemplating all the ways in which my life and my choices have led me down some dark paths and disturbing detours. Which in turn lead me directly to thinking about regret, guilt and how to free ourselves from its punishing effects. How do we live these complicated and complex human lives and not have regret?
In my own experience, I have found the key lies in the stories we tell ourselves. Every mis-step and painful path I have taken provided me with an opportunity. A choice to reframe and spin a transformation narrative of redemption or wallow in self-loathing and judgmental disapproval of myself. Of course, this is all only apparent to me in retrospect. I spent plenty of years in the wallowing and regretful interpretation of my life experiences. But now I can honestly say that I see things completely differently.
Everything that happened to me led me here. I have no regrets. No desire to re-write history. No what-ifs. I now view my past and current challenges as transformation stories in the making. There is so much opportunity in our past if we spin the story to one that focuses on what we’ve learned from it versus how we were hurt, damaged or victimized by it. The truth is that every painful regret has cracked us open just a little more…and the cracks are where the light comes through. Shining brightly in our eyes and illuminating our minds, it has something important to reveal to us.
What is it telling us? How can we take the data we’ve been collecting and use it to make our lives enriched with purpose, joy and meaning? Can we come to a place of peace, understanding and acceptance that our past had to be what it was in order for us to be where we are today? The truth is that Spirit uses everything to lift us to our greatest potential. Let us all seek to become better at allowing Spirit to assist us in reinterpreting our most painful moments in the service of our highest good.