Freedom Blog

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda!

No Limits | The Freedom Blog

Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda!

Written by Steven Griggs |

“Many of us crucify ourselves between two thieves- regret for the past and fear of the future”                                                                                                                 Fulton Oursler

"Don't grieve. Anything you lose comes round in another form."

How many times have you had the thoughts or spoken the words: If only I would have… If only I could have ….  I should have….?  

Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda.  We are all pretty familiar with WCS.

These words mean the same thing in any language and we all speak this language- the language of regret.

But this is a perilous conversation to have no matter what language you are speaking.

Do we ever really think about how much time and energy we waste looking back, constantly reassessing, reliving or reviewing the past?

Our minds rarely live in the present, in the current moment. We are forever looking back or looking forward but we are rarely in the now, the right now.

That’s because it’s hard.

It is very difficult to stay present. Our ego mind does not want to go quiet. It is on a continual quest to stay anywhere but in the here and now.

Watch yourself. See where your thoughts and attention go.

I am willing to bet your mind is not present as much as you think it is.

You can watch this when you meditate. Do you see how your mind will constantly try to sidetrack you and drag your attention to some little item, to some to do list, to another review of the same situation?

Meditation requires you to cancel those distractions and stay centered, to slip in between the gaps in your thoughts.

But it can be very busy in there!

It is the same during our day to day life, only much more active and much less noticeable.
Our busy distractions become almost invisible, like background noise, like a soundtrack of questions, WCS’s and more questions.

Living in the world of WCS’s is easy because your mind is always off somewhere else, sidetracked from the real task at hand which is staying present and working on yourself.

It is similar to gossip. Did you ever notice how comfortable it can be to join in with others when talking about someone else? Families are especially good at this.

It’s comfortable and familiar and your ego mind loves it because it makes it feel so good! Talking down other people is one of its favorite things!

The trick is to stay awake. Watch your thoughts, watch when they disappear into the past or drift off into a daydream about the future.

It’s OK to daydream a bit but living continually in WCS’s and regret will suck you dry.

The only way to overcome regret is to accept that it happened. Remind yourself that it is the mistakes and lessons that have gotten you to this point and because of those lessons you are wiser, more understanding and have a deeper compassion for your fellow man.

Try to police your mind and when it strays, herd it back to the present. It takes constant vigilance. Bring your attention back, take a deep breath, focus on where you are standing or sitting at that very moment. Feel yourself. Feel your body, feel the air you are breathing in. 
Focus on what you are seeing, hearing, smelling, and sensing. Pull your attention in.

Each day here is important.

Don’t waste another day looking at old tired reruns and writing critiques of a movie you’ve already lived.