More often than not , when a celebrity with a pretty much messed up life is asked about regrets, he/she will always say that they have no regrets and the experiences in their life have made them the people they are today. But this is not limited to celebrities, I often hear people around me say that they have had no regrets in life. For a very long time(mid teens to mid twenties) I really liked the sound of this phrase – ‘No Regrets!’ Wow! Makes you sound so profound, so strong, so right! Not only the sound of it, I thought that it is possible for people to feel no regrets for the bad choices they have made in their lives. But lately I find myself questioning this statement and doubting the truthfulness of people who say it.
What is it to regret something? I looked up the dictionary and it says - “to feel sorrow or remorse for a fault, act, loss, disappointment, etc.”
How can one spend a lifetime without feeling this even once? Saying that you have no regrets means that you don’t acknowledge the mistakes in your life. It means that if given a chance you’d lead your life in exactly the same way that you have lead till now. You will fall at the same places, trust the same worthless people, hurt the precious ones, rue over minor failures, miss the good but small things in life while working, all this and more even if you knew better at that time. I find it hard to believe that any logical person would want to repeat the same mistake? If you knew there was a ditch on a road, would you want to fall into it to know the experience of falling or would you be careful on that road and want to experience falling(if at all) on some other unknown path?
Makes me wonder if this ‘No Regrets’ attitude is just a tough façade over a weak interior. Such a person must find it difficult to admit it to himself/herself first and then to people that he/she just messed up. To own up and admit to oneself that the decision backfired, that the said words were spiteful and bad must be way tougher than saying “I regret having done that”. Does admitting to regret something make you a weaker person? Not in my opinion. Infact I think if ‘regret’ is something it is - first acceptance of a mistake, then it is an apology to self about having made that choice despite the ‘voice in head’ saying otherwise and lastly it is a resolve to make things better and not repeat the mistake again. None of these three things are qualities of a weak person, but qualities of a person willing to grow internally as an individual instead of focusing on projecting himself/herself better.
That said, do you have regrets in life?