The Power of Regret by Rick White, President 180BIZ
So, what I want to talk to you about today? I'm kind of going to go down a range here and I hope this makes sense to you. When things happen and they don't go our way, we tend to have regret. Regret is an indicator that we feel we could have done something a little bit better or a little bit different. Regret has some powerful lessons. We all have regret in our lives for mistakes that we made. There are times when we feel like we made the wrong choice. But do you know something? I truly believe that everything that happens in our lives happens for us. They're designed to help us become better people to accept. I think that's really what life is all about. It’s learning to accept. Think about the serenity prayer. It still touches me.
Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
the courage to change the things I can,
and the wisdom to know the difference.
Look at regret and think what you could have done differently or was it something that you wanted to end differently but I couldn't control? Learn the difference between those two. It's okay to have regret and learn from it. Next time do it better. That's the power of regret.
That is also the power of guilt. Guilt is not a bad thing as long as you don't live there. Guilt is an amazing thing. Guilt is your body, your soul telling you that you broke one of your rules. That's what guilt is. Guilt is saying, “Hey, you violated a rule. That's not okay.” That's powerful because it helps us get better. It's important not to live there though. It's important to learn the lesson and move on and see the joy in life. See the opportunities in life.
With regret, if it's something I can do better next time, let me learn the lesson. If I regret something and it's outside of my control, then that is me trying to force an event or a person to fit my will, to fit my mold of what life is supposed to look like in my eyes. And that's not fair.
I want to be a totally transparent with you. I'm at my mom and dads house right now. I am so grateful for my mom. And I'm not just saying that cause she watches these every day. I'm not who I am now without her and not just physically. My essence wouldn't be who I am today without my mother. With my dad, I have a very unique relationship. My dad grew up with an alcoholic mother. He quit school when he was about eight years old to take care of her. His dad died when he was three. So, my dad has done his very best, but I consider him a unique individual.
And I got here yesterday. My dad was sitting watching TV and he never stopped. And you know something, there's a part of me that thought, “That's not right.” I haven't seen him in five months. He should come out and want to spend time with me. I could have regret over that. But you know something, I need to accept my dad for who he is and love him that. So, I ask you is your regret coming from a lesson or is it coming from a myth? Is it coming from something that you've just dreamed up in your mind? I decided that when my dad finally passes I am not going to have regret.
He and I have said what we need to say to each other. We say it all the time to each other. I know my dad's heart and he knows mine. If you ever want to see somebody squirm, watch my dad try to express his feelings. It's hilarious. But I love the guy. Because guess what? I wouldn't be who I am today without him either. I wouldn't be who I am today without him, good or bad. And I think part of life is about learning to accept. And I think that's really important.
So, I wanted to talk to you today about regret. And the other thing I wanted to talk to you about is guilt. Guilt is amazing. Guilt is your soul, your essence saying you did something wrong. Don't make it your go to emotion, which is something I struggle with. Guilt is my go to emotion. Other people may go to anger or happiness or joy. Don't ever let guilt get to shame. Shame is bad all the time. Guilt says you did something wrong. Shame says you did something bad.
You are not bad. None of us are bad. All of us are just trying to get through life and we're doing the very best we can with the opportunities we see in our lives. So, I want you to be really careful about this. Learn to forgive through regret, through guilt and shame. Learn to forgive. Forgiveness comes three different ways. We only ever think of forgiveness between two people. And sometimes we ask God for forgiveness.
Sometimes we feel like we can't do anything right. To get past that feeling you need to look at your book of rules. Look at your rules and see if they're fair. Sometimes we set rules that are so high that they're not attainable. I think we can have a vision of who we want to become. But we need to have basic rules, basic real rules. And we need to learn to forgive. But the first person we need to forgive is ourselves. Because if you can really forgive yourself, you can let go of the guilt. It never turns to shame.
No one is perfect. All you can ever hope for is your best. And if you can look at something, even if it's an Epic fail remember that it was your best, and next time you’ll do better. That's all you can ever ask for. It's not about being perfect, it's about learning. It's about falling down. It's about getting up and brushing off and keep on going. Nelson Mandela once said, “Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again.” So, what I want you to do is step back and love yourself.
Give yourself a hug every time and let yourself love yourself. It's okay. You're a good person. You're not a perfect person. Go out and make the mistakes you need to make and learn from them and get better. That's all we can ever hope for. Look, I'm on my third marriage. I love my wife desperately. We're going to celebrate 17 years on the 7th of June. I love this woman to the ends of the earth more today than ever before. You've got to learn to forgive yourself, to let go of all the junk inside and see the gray. See the beauty. I wish you could see you through my eyes.
I wish you guys could see yourselves through my eyes because each and every one of you is amazing. Each and every one of you is got such brilliance inside and you overestimate what you can do in a year and you underestimate what you can do in a decade. You have such brilliance inside. Let it out. Love yourself. That's where it starts. Forgive yourself. So, if you've noticed, I've kind of started with regret and then we went to guilt and then to shame and now to forgiveness. Because true forgiveness is wiping the slate clean. It doesn't mean that you have to trust whoever you're forgiving again, If I'm forgiving somebody that stole from me, forgiveness is not a gift I give them. Forgiveness as a gift I give myself.
Anger and bitterness and hatred is like drinking a poison and waiting for the other person to die. Just let go of it. And I've had some stuff in my life. My daughter was molested and abused when she was younger. I had to let go of it. I had such anger and hatred inside and it was only about three or four years ago that I was finally able to let it go and forgive. And I did that watching the movie, The Shack with tears running down my face. Brenda and I tried probably a dozen times to watch that movie and it hit me on such a level that I could only get about 15 or 20 minutes in and I had to stop. I couldn't watch it. I forced myself through it one time and it changed my life. So, William Paul Young, thank you for The Shack.
I get a lot of what I believe from the old theologians like William Paul Young. So, listen, I love you guys. I want you to love yourself, please. Forgive yourself and see that you're a work in process. The Bible says we are on the potter's wheel and God is constantly lovingly refining us. He is making us into a one of a kind masterpiece. Each and every one of us. If you want to think about something that's mind blowing, think about that. You are the only you that will ever be on this planet. There's like a one and 4 billion chance that you were ever created and conceived and where you're at right now. Let's just pray real quick.
Heavenly father, I want to thank you for today. I want to thank you for another chance to be with people and to make a difference. Thank you for this day. Thank you for the spring. Thank you for the slowing everything down and getting people back to their family. Lord, help us to see those that are feeling alone and isolated. Help us to see it and reach out to them just to give them a hand. Let them know that we love them and care about them. Help us to be your angels here today on earth. Help us to forgive ourselves and to see what you see in us because you love us that much. We ask this in your son's name. Amen.
Go and enjoy the day that God give us today. And the reality is he's given us every day. So what are you going to do about it? Accept yourself and learn to accept the people around you and you will have an amazing life. That's what I'm working on. I’m working on being more accepting and less judgmental. So I love you guys. Thank you so much. Have a great Sunday. Take care. God bless.
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