Ever made a bad decision, mistake or just wish you could erase a previous action, choice or outcome? This makes you normal, but the real question is - do you still feel the regret or pain of one of these actions and are you still living with the inability to let go - even to the point of missing a second or even third chance that life always offers?
Trust me - I have made more than my share of poor choices and life and career decisions, but life has always come through offering me the opportunity to begin again whether in a relationship, business activity or any number of life areas.
What are second chances and why do we fail to recognize or take advantage of them? The first question is easy but the second one deserves a little more understanding.
Second chances - When life says - it's OK you can try again even though you screwed up last time. Pretty simple - wouldn't you agree?
But the real question is - why do we fail to recognize or take advantage of them?
There are many reasons but I believe most of them fall into one or more of the following categories; fear, ego needs, you are closed off emotionally, low self-esteem, resistance or fear of change, stuck in blame or whining or sustained anger or regret. Let's take a brief look at each when it comes to missing second, third or even a tenth chance.
Fear - the number one cause of all negative emotions is fear or the mindset that life is giving you something you don't deserve or want. When we fail or face severe challenges, problems or mistakes we have two choices fear what's happening and what could or might happen or learn from - whatever - and move on wiser. Not always easy or for some people even possible but in the end you can choose to remain stuck or begin again.
Ego needs - the ego can't admit mistakes, failure or poor performance or outcomes. It circles the wagons and draws a line in the sand or often just goes into denial. But, in the end - it is what it is - and you can accept, admit or face it or pretend it isn't happening or didn't happen. But, in the end it did so none of these tactics will help you grow, improve or change for the better.
You are closed off emotionally - shutting down emotionally and failing to experience, acknowledge or display your reaction to what is happening (tears, managed anger or even laughter) just increases your stress and your method of justification for your responses. In the end however the emotional pain that you experience is a warning, guide, helper if you will only pay attention and learn from it what it is trying to teach you.
Low self-esteem - If you don't like yourself or feel you are worthy, worthwhile or special (not in an arrogant way) you will always let what is happening control you and fail to learn or change. Your common response is almost always "I deserve or deserved this."
Resistance or fear of change - Life changes. Nothing remains the same. Everything ends sooner or later. Change is not good or bad or anything in between, it is simply life unfolding one moment, one day or one year at a time. Resisting what is will never maintain the comfortable status quo - things will just keep changing and you can interpret it as a positive opportunity or something to regret and try to hold on to for dear life.
You are stuck in blame or whining - Get over it. Enough said.
Sustained anger or regret - when you are stuck in regret or anger (both negative emotions) you will fail to recognize something new that could be a wonderful next step or potential opportunity. You are so wrapped up in your feelings that even a slap on the side of your head with a baseball bat won't get your attention.
So, have you been given a second or third chance lately? Have you honored, it or avoided it or run from it?