Regrets are useful in that they can help you to realize, in a personally meaningful way, the mistakes you’ve made in the past. Once a regret has served that purpose, however, it’s best to get rid of it and replace it with something more positive. For if you continue to dwell on your regrets, that focuses your mind on something negative—your mistakes—instead of on the positive steps you are committed to taking. Fortunately, there’s a simple way to take the power of your regrets and turn it in a positive direction. This is done by replacing each regret with a corresponding affirmation.
Go through your list of regrets one last time. For each regret, devise a positive, empowering affirmation. From that point on, whenever you feel a particular regret coming on, make the conscious decision to substitute the affirmation that has grown out of that regret. It will take you a little while to get into the habit of doing so. If you keep at it, though, the affirmations will soon just automatically take over.For example, you may have a regret such as “I regret that I never went to college.” You can choose to replace this regret with “I will take advantage of the enormous opportunities to learn that are available to me every day.” Another example: “I regret getting so deeply in debt” can be replaced with “I find new ways to create value each day.” You don’t need to speak the affirmations out loud or write them down (though that would certainly not hurt). Simply use them in the thoughts you think to yourself to replace your regrets with positive alternatives.
Though the positive affirmations may seem uncomfortable and unnatural at first, just step back and think about what you’re doing. Instead of filling your mind with negativity, you’re choosing to focus upon thoughts of how you can move positively forward. And whatever you focus upon, you act upon. So turning your regrets into affirmations can provide you with a continuing source of drive and determination to get things done.