Regret can be one of the hardest things to move on from. It’s like a deadweight that rides on your back through life. Slowing you down and makes you tired. For some though, it can be that energy boost they need to move faster rather than being a hindrance.
Why is that some people are motivated by regret or just slow down in fear by it? It most likely the difference in self-compassion.
Researches from UCLA had 400 random adults write down their biggest regret and then write bout the self compassion of it. Some said relationships with people who cheated on them, others wrote about arguments they had with their parents.
Half the group wrote down about their regrets and their self esteem from that. They were encouraged to use positives rather than negative thoughts.
The questions from the results has lead that the people who were more positive in journals thought it was a self improvement assessment. The negative ones weren’t able to essentially learn from those prior mistakes and were more likely to repeat them.
Why? The participates were asked if they have forgave themselves since then to see if there was a correlation. As it turns out there was a correlation. Those who were more acceptance about their regret were more motivated to improve and more humble.
This self-compassion allows people to identify why they regretted something and allowed to be free to find opportunities to move on from it. So if we’re more accepting to our past, we can tolerate it and learn from it than live in denial or ignorance.
If there was one thing to learn from this is that anyone can practice self-compassion about their regrets. Those who are compassionate have the motivational drive to write about the positive experience out of a regret without being told so. This is the same for controlling self esteem.
So ask yourself: “Imagine that you are talking to yourself about this regret from a compassionate and understanding perspective. What would you say?” That’s all it takes to change your perspective.