We’ve all done things that we’re not proud of. On the other side of the coin, we’ve not done things that we wish we had.
But should we hang on to those feelings?
Having regrets isn’t a bad thing, and it shouldn’t be treated as such if you just use a little common sense. As stated, regret usually comes about when you do something you know your shouldn’t have which had consequences, or you don’t do something you know you should.
These can be valuable assets in knowing what you do and don’t want for the future. That uncomfortable pain can be positively channelled to make you a better person, but if you dismiss that pain then it becomes ineffective. People try to dress it up as “No regrets, just lessons learned” , but it’s the same thing, so all that you are doing is making it sound a little better for yourself.
Unfortunately a lot of people “Say I’ve no regrets” in order to avoid blame. They’ve usually done some stupid, or more commonly “shitty” things in their life, and are trying to mentally excuse themselves from it by projecting some bravado and bullshit , usually concerning “YOLO”, “Living in the moment” or some similarly cringeworthy excuse.
In a nutshell people who have no regrets haven’t learned from their mistakes!
Not taking that dream job becasue it was abroad and you got scared – Mistake!
Fucking your best friend’s wife/husband – Mistake!
Not speaking to your family for years over a trivial matter – Mistake!
Bering a shit parent who wasn’t there or was violent – Mistake!
Dressing it up as “It’s what you wanted at that moment” is a really poor and thin excuse, and generally ether shows a real lack of self control or simply not caring about the outcome.
Of course there is a huge difference between acknowledging regrets as opposed to unhealthily dwelling on them. Regrets don’t need to consume you, rather if a similar situation arises you should use those regrets as hindsight. If you have no regrets then you’ll probably make the same mistakes twice, and that means you’re either very stupid or your simply a bad person.
Me? I’ve plenty of regrets, but they are my strength. To deny them would be denying my very character, and while I don’t dwell on them, I have them around so that I make damn sure they don’t happen again.
So when the next time someone says “I’ve no regrets” what they really means is “I do what I like and to hell with the consequences”.