Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Will It Still Matter?

Few will disagree when I say that somewhere in our lives we'll do something that later on we'll feel was foolish or undesirable. It may be what we'd said, how we acted or what we did, but after the event has passed we'll look back and shake our heads, wondering how we could have let that slide.

I had just a moment like that yesterday and unfortunately I'm the type that has a hard time letting go of the mistakes I do.

I'll sit there afterwards and brew on what I said or did. Things like "How stupid! Why did I let that happen?!" or "I should have been more mindful, if only I'd just - insert my fixer to situation here - then things wouldn't have turned out the way they did!"

Really, if life only had a reset button.

Unfortunately though, it doesn't and we're stuck with these bitter feelings that aren't doing us any good. 

I don't remember from where exactly, but recently I came across a rather good saying involving situations like these. Obviously, it won't work with each and every situation we come across, but if we ask ourselves this simple little question, odds are, we can realize that the mistake we made isn't nearly as bad as we first believed it to be.

"Will this still matter in ten years?"

So, will it? Take a moment to consider what's been on your mind recently, and ask yourself that very question.

I'd say nine times out of ten, it won't.

How about five years?

Maybe the odds aren't as great, but they're probably still pretty good, aren't they? And in cases where the situation does matter quite a bit, will it matter just as much down the road?

We're always growing in our lives, always trying new things and meeting new people. We can't always make the best impression or cinch the deal we're working on. We won't always have the knowledge needed to make the right decision and sometimes it's downright necessary to get down in the dirt and scuff our knees.

What we need to remember is to forgive ourselves for our shortcomings, realize that's life and move on. Time spent berating ourselves when the situation is done is wasted time.

So let's put aside the self-criticism, accept what we have to live with and keep moving forward towards our dreams.

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