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The Regret Monster

Even when you’re 99% sure a difficult decision is right—such as separating from your spouse, uprooting your whole life or starting a new job—you’re bound to meet the Regret Monster.

I recently did those three things. Left my husband, moved to a new city and found a job. Before I started working, though, I found myself in a pit of despair. What if I made the wrong decision? Was I really as selfish as they say?

Over and over I reviewed my reasons for leaving. Over and over I arrived at the same conclusion: we’d both been unhappy for years. We were actually detrimental to our community. Neither of us wanted to change. I chose to leave.

I regret the situation, but not my decision.

When regret attacks

Regret, it turns out, is sharpest and strongest when a new choice is in play. The upheaval and uncertainty of actually living with a decision is hard. 

Most people experience short-term regret. It’s normal. Why? Because starting a new life is scary! We’ve never been in this situation before. We’re learning new things, meeting new people, facing new challenges. 

Our scary new life makes our safe old life look pretty darn good.

But wait, there’s more! Most people who walk through the dark shadowy valley with the Short-Term Regret Monster find that it was all just that. Shadows and monsters. Not reality.

The good news is that the majority of people who make difficult life choices do not regret their decision in the long term.

And, at the end of life, most people regret things they didn’t do. They don’t regret things they did.

If you’re struggling with regret, listen to Scott Barry Kaufman’s interview with Robert Leahy. It’s called Find Freedom from Regret; it was so good I listened to it twice.

By the way, I love my new job! I am so grateful and happy for the way things turned out. The Regret Monster was a horrible roommate for a couple of weeks, but he moved out. I have my place—and myself—back.

With love,

Laurie

Regret on She Blossoms

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3 thoughts on “The Regret Monster”

  1. I recently discovered a video from when you were in Glendale, AZ. I’m heading that way in a few days so I was happy to learn somethings…aquatic center benefits.
    I have the same van as you. I got it in March of this year and I too love it. Are you still traveling?
    I’m going to go back and look at some of your videos now. Thanx. Asha

    1. Asha, hello! Forgive me for not replying sooner. I was absolutely buried in a new city, new home, new job and new routine. Not to mention my first Christmas and New Year’s alone. But I’m poking my head out again, rested and eager to start fresh.

      I’d love to hear how you’re doing in “our” van 🙂 Please do keep in touch.

      All good things,
      Laurie

  2. Not moving to Florida where my
    Mom and step dad live ….
    Not they are very old 88 and 89
    I thought about moving to Florida to
    Be closer with them and it never happened 🤷‍♂️…….🙏

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