Thoughts to Ponder
“Processing our failures only keeps us in the past … forgive, let go and get back up … for if we remain in that negative space, we allow the shadow to win.’”
Window of Wisdom*
Hashing over old mistakes is a habit many of us learned from our families and teachers. We continue to reinforce that habit as we mature. But is it good for us?
When we do something wrong we should review our contribution to the argument, unpleasant situation or disaster. After accepting our part in the situation we apologize and vow to do better in the future. If we’re fortunate the other party will accept our apology and agree to move on. Otherwise, we’ve lost a friend or job.
If the situation is not resolved amicably, we still need to move forward. We can remember the situation as a learning experience and live our lives according to our new awareness. Or, like most of us we learn and change our behavior, yet carry the guilt around for the next 50 years. Nothing weighs more than guilt. It prods us at the most inconvenient times. Perhaps we’re starting a new job and each day we wonder if that is the day our supervisor learns about our colossal error that cost the old employer a valuable contract. Possibly, we meet a new love but are afraid to commit because that person may learn how we caused pain in a former relationship.
When we notice that our old mistake is costing us happiness in our current lives it is past time to heal ourselves. If we were truly contrite about the situation we can tell ourselves that we took all the steps we could to repair the damage and have changed our behavior. If the situation catches up to us, we must be truthful and show our remorse.
In the meantime, to grow into a better person we need to do as Martha Beck recommends:
“Every day, do at least one frightening thing that contributes to the
fulfillment of your desires.”**
Perhaps that frightening thing is merging onto the Interstate to get to work. We don’t like it, but we have to do it to feed our family. For me the most scary thing I need to do is make a phone call. The phone that weighs ounces in my pocket weighs 500 pounds when I have to punch in some numbers and hit send. I fear I may be interrupting something important on the other end. Yet I must do it to schedule appointments and visit with my friends. One event that terrified me was enrolling in college when I was in my early 40s. It turned out to be the best decision I ever made.
Each of us has different things that frighten us, but we’ll get nowhere except our rocking chairs if we give into those fears. We must do something scary each and every day to move forward to reach our goals.
Spirit, Please remind us each day to do something that frightens us, whether it is tasting an unusual food or applying for a new job. Only in that way can we grow into the strong people we are meant to be. And, so it is.
*A Window of Wisdom, July 4, 2016, https://awindowofwisdom.wordpress.com
**July 6, 2016, Menu Item #5, Risk, The Joy Diet, Martha Beck, firstname.lastname@example.org
© by Sharon D. Dillon, July 17, 2016
Chesapeake Bay Writers, Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop, Southern Humorists, National Society of Newspaper Columnists
Author of Echoes of your Choices, 2016, available as an e-book or paperback at Amazon, Barnes and Noble and other online sites.