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How to Avoid a Life of Regret

What we regret

The regrets that bother us the most involve failing to live up to our “ideal selves.” 

We’re not as bothered by the mistakes we’ve made or the things we ought to have done as we are bothered by never becoming the person we truly wanted to be.

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How to Avoid a Life of Regret

How to Avoid a Life of Regret

https://lifehacker.com/how-to-avoid-a-life-of-regret-1826928609

lifehacker.com

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Key Ideas

What we regret

The regrets that bother us the most involve failing to live up to our “ideal selves.” 

We’re not as bothered by the mistakes we’ve made or the things we ought to have done as we are bothered by never becoming the person we truly wanted to be.

The theory of the 3 selves

  • The actual self is what a person believes to be now, based on current attributes and abilities. 
  • The ideal self is comprised of the attributes and abilities a person would like to possess one day— goals, hopes, and aspirations. 
  • The ought self is who someone believes they should have been according to their obligations and responsibilities.

Regretting what we don't do

People regret their inactions more than their actions in the long term.

  • A mistake makes you feel a great deal of regret, but you get over it quickly because you most likely can fix it.
  • You can’t fix what was never done in the first place. Inaction, the utter lack of trying, is what will truly haunt you. 

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Experiencing regret

When you experience regret, you neglect the celebration of all of the exciting parts of your life to focus on this one festering mistake that haunts you.

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Learning from Your Regrets

Regret can be seen as a mistake that we haven't learned the proper lesson from yet. If we learn from it, that mistake becomes helpful and makes us better.

The way to move on is to take responsibility for your mistakes. Understand what happened and integrate that experience into your understanding of who you are today.

Questioning Your Narratives

Our narratives are the way our minds construct events to explain our feelings and experiences

They are seldom accurate and often unhelpful, but we need them to hold our sense of self in place.

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Not Asking for Help

There are a handful of reasons we don’t ask for help, but it’s usually because we’re too proud or scared, and that’s a huge waste of time, because it keeps you from moving forward.

If you fe...

Trying to Make Bad Relationships Work

Reasons people usually use:

  • Thinking you have more in common with the person you're dating than you actually do;
  • Being in a relationship just to avoid loneliness;
  • Staying in a relationship only out of fear of losing the person.

Bad relationships cloud your judgment, prolong your unhappiness, and distract you from things that matter to you most. 

Dwelling on Your Mistakes

Learning from your mistakes is one thing. Dwelling on them wastes your time, diminishes your confidence, and keeps you from getting on with your life.

Dwelling makes you feel like a failure. When you feel like a failure, it’s easy to tell yourself there’s no point in trying, because you already suck.

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Defining excuses

Excuses are rationalizations we make to ourselves about people, events, and circumstances. 

They are invented reasons we create to defend our behavior, to postpone taking action or simpl...

The Fear Trap

We make excuses for the following key reasons:

  • Fear of Failure
  • Fear of Embarrassment
  • Fear of Success
  • Fear of Change
  • Fear of Uncertainty
  • Fear of Responsibility
  • Fear of Making Mistakes
  • Perceived lack of confidence or resources
To successfully eliminate excuses we must first consider removing all traces of fear. Fear paralyzes us and prevents forward movement in all areas of our lives.
'There’s just not enough time'
This excuse means a lack of desire, focus, discipline, and direction.
It suggests the wrong priorities or time management problems. It could also indicate laziness or procrastination.

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