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Redirect the Regret

Two situations have been bringing up a lot of emotions for me lately. The first is helping friends go through photos for their graduation parties. As they find favorite photos of the past, my own kids are in many of the shots. An instant time machine brings me back to the moments in each photo. I can even remember the conversations, planning and more. The second situation happening right now is that my son is preparing to move out of the house. I love having my son at home. He works hard, he has been training me at the gym, and we love having coffee together. To say his leaving will leave a void is an understatement. 

Something else has emerged from these two things happening in my life: regret.

Pavement Ends sign

These immediate questions fill my mind:

  • Did I spend enough time with my kids?
  • Did my kids enjoy the things we did?
  • What are the things we wanted to do but never got around to doing?
  • What did I miss because I was so busy?

How do we change the course of regret?  I’d like to suggest an 8-step process.

  • Name the regret. Be as specific as possible.
  • What does LOVE say to the thing you regret?
  • What does FORGIVENESS say to the thing you regret?
  • What does ACCEPTANCE say to the thing you regret?
  • What does JOY say to the thing you regret?
  • What does GRACE say to the thing you regret?
  • Which of the last five words resonates the most for you?
  • Continue speaking this word over the regret. Notice where the redirect takes

I invite you to get curious about your new direction. Imagine redirecting your life to lead with love or joy or acceptance…you get the idea. It completely redirects how we approach everything—past, present and future. Happy redirecting!

I could go on and on, but I won’t because it’s not serving me or them or, quite frankly, the present time. In fact, regret takes me below the line so fast that it’s easy to get sucked into the “what if” questions. By the time I’m done, somehow I have fallen into the trap of thinking I was a horrible parent.

I know better. I am an amazing parent. Of course there are the mistakes and yet, each and every one of them has been used for learning and growth. This got me to thinking about redirecting the regret. Not just reframing, but completely redirecting the path.  Redirect can be defined as to change the course or direction of.

Blessings, Peace and JOY—

-Deb