What if I had come and hugged her instead of leaving, maybe now she would have forgiven me? What if I had been gentle with my words, maybe now things would have been better? What if I had showed him what I truly felt, he would not have left me? What if I had called her on that particular day just to say hello, so she would have known how important she was to me? What if I had said sorry, maybe we would not have been separated? What if I had left him then instead of staying in unhappy relationship, maybe by now I would have lived a peaceful, healthy life? What if I had kept my anger to myself, maybe now no one would have been hurting? What if I just had let him know how I truly feel, we would have gotten on better? What if I just had been wiser, maybe now I would have been happier? What if?!
Regret can be a hard call to handle, and yet so many of us engulf ourselves in the play of psychological games, especially widely practised in the field of human relationships, that yell about mental and emotional manipulation. And it all done believing that somehow we gain control over some situation or person.
What if for one full day – from morning till the moment you go to sleep – you do exactly as your heart tells you? What if just for one full day you said the words of love and kindness that your heart whispers to you tirelessly; showed love to the ones you love and the ones you call strangers, forgave even when you saw it as an impossible thing, hugged and allowed yourself to cry or laugh uncontrollably, made love in ways never explored before, loved and accepted yourself just as you were and gently told the truth as it was without warring what the other might think? What if you finally stopped pretending being someone you were not and instead began being as you truly were? Life is too short to pretend and act upon your ego and play psychological games. Life is too short to be wasted for the things that later you might regret. Life is too short to even give time to regret. Life is so precious, human relationship around us are so precious, each breath you take is a life-saver… If you just could see it in that way? What a huge difference it would make in your life – daily life. I wish you could see what I see…
Since childhood we have been brainwashed or programmed into believing that it was normal and even needed to play psychological games while in relationships with others, so to have control over things or people, so to shape the world to our own distorted picture, so to call it happiness… That’s why so many loving relationships fall apart and so many divorces happen, or people that potentially could be together for the rest of their lives, separate out of sudden. Games! Games! Games! Is there a limit to that?!
Yes, there is.
I spent this beautiful evening with a dear friend of mine while having my one week holiday in Calabria, South Italy. We sat, had some tea, walked and talked until the early hours of the morning. We said goodnight to each other just before the sun began to climb up the sky. We discussed exactly this kind of topic, where I urged her: “Listen to your heart, listen and act upon it, refuse to leave space for your cousin ego. You want to hug someone, go and hug them; you want to say ‘I am sorry’, then do so; you want him to know what he truly means to you, let him know it regardless of his reaction. Sow the seed, water it as your heart asks you, and his part leave to him. It does not matter how he feels about you. What matters is how you feel and how free you are to express it. Be gentle with your words and actions. Be free in your thoughts, in your feelings, in your emotions, in your actions, in your words. That way you will have no regrets. Allow yourself to breathe…freely. Just breathe.”
Those words did not come from the books I read or some random wisdom I heard somewhere some time ago. Those words came based on my own experience. Those words are made of wasted time and far too many regrets and ‘what ifs’ I have invited into my life due to lack of understanding of how short one precious moment can be and how much it can be missed. Once the bird has been let out, it is out for good. I believe that the best of yourself you can be when you go through your own self created hell or heaven; when you become that something. There you make mistakes that create beautiful opportunities for you to learn your lessons. Now it is up to you what you do with those lessons – you learn them or waste them and put them behind you or store them in some little drawer hidden in the corner of your mind, lock it and throw the key away in hopes for it to never resurface again. Ignorance can be the greatest sin you could choose to commit to. It teaches you nothing, but just invites more of ‘what ifs’. Ignorance is the sister-in-law of regret.
One day I became wise enough to understand that I was fed up of living life with regret, and the only way of getting out of that vicious circle was to start being true to my heart, to myself, so I could be true to others; do and say things as I feel, and the most importantly, no matter what, I learned to mind my own words, as words carry so much power. More and more I began consciously choosing to say words that I felt were true to my heart or to express love in a way that inspired me to be the best version of myself, even if that meant to go and embrace someone unknown to me in the middle of the street or forgive someone I somewhat believed did me wrong. I understood, I loved life far too much to continue wasting my time of being someone I was not or doing and saying things I did not actual mean. Wow! What a beautiful guide the human heart can be, if you just listen!!
Oh, I am not perfect, but I can be perfect in my im-perfections. However, one thing I truly know I have no desire for regrets. It is not what I want to remember on my death bed. Unfortunately, so many of us throughout our lifetime do not bring ourselves to say I Love You, because some of us tend to believe that for some reason the other one might take advantage of their feelings or that they will not be able to handle a vulnerable side of theirs. Love can carry so much vulnerability, but if you just knew how much power and strength resides in that vulnerability, you would never ever suppress your love, but instead would allow for it to be expressed to its fullest.
I appreciate the words I wrote some time ago in one of my stories titled ‘A Tired Woman and Universe’: “…Speak to me directly, open your heart, don’t be afraid to be vulnerable, be honest, and I shall respond accordingly. I love you. I love you so much. I make myself vulnerable each time I tell you how much I love you and yet my strength lies in my vulnerability. I want what you want for yourself. Ask me. Tell me. Show me. And have faith in me.”
I refuse to live in regret. My time is too precious for that. I cannot regret for doing or saying things that I felt were true to me. You do not like it, it is weird to you, you cannot accept it?!. That’s ok with me. It would be not ok if I spent my time worrying about what you might think of me if I did that or that. I could not live with myself knowing that I did not do enough, that I did not embrace you when my heart yelled love for you. I could not live with myself if I did not apologies to you the moment I realised my mistake. I could not live with myself if I did not tell you my truth as I truly felt it. Fine, if I am wrong! Please come and correct me, but also please…be gentle with your words and actions, and I promise I will always listen to you.
BE and DO exactly as your heart wants you to be and say and do. BE THAT TRUTH! DO IT! SAY IT! You have so little time for anything else. Begin your new life now. It is always a right time! There is no such thing as wrong timing or too late. My goodness, you are still breathing, it means you are still on time. Now and not later, but Now. Forget later, remember and choose Now instead.
There are many commercial authors, equally the same brainwashed by the society and its norms on how to be, who write and publish books, and sadly most of that material becomes best-sellers, on how to manipulate another person, how to be a bitch so the guy would love you or how to act as a hard-to-get so a woman would become intrigued, and so on and so on. If I could, I would never allow such kind of material to come out. Why? OK, let me give you an example that most of people one way or the other exercise in their day-to-day living…
Perhaps you are a guy who falls in love with a beautiful girl. You would like to date and love and spend your time with her. You want to approach her, and eventually you do so. You approach her with an open heart, you listen to your heart’s whisper. From your behaviour she can see that you like her. She is pleased, but…she just came out of the difficult relationship, she had a painful separation and just a few days ago she read a book by some author teaching her how to act as a bitch and the one as a hard-to-get or some friend told her the same truth, encouraged her to act in this kind of way. Even though her heart tirelessly whispers to become open to you and be honest, but her ego tells her opposite. And because she is so afraid to be hurt again, she chooses to play a game. She plays with you, she flirts, she teases you, she can be even rude at times or possessive, she tries to make you feel jealous and uncertain and she makes sure not to let go of you. She likes your attention, she likes your vulnerability and honesty and confusion, and deep in her heart she knows she is doing wrong, but the game has caught her, and so she is faithfully playing it. How long do you think it would take you to feel being manipulated and played? Would you appreciate it? Would you still want her? Most likely you would put up with her behaviour for some time, especially if she plays her game well enough, but, you see, even then she shall fail, because, if you stay sincere and truly loving, eventually she might fall in love with you, and then she might become open to you as well, and the game will be over…for some time, for a short time only. And then the vicious circle begins circling again…
Or perhaps you are a guy who plays games too and you meet a girl who does the same. So you play those psychological games thinking that in that way you will attract each other more and yet keep your pride and dignity in tact. How silly! What a waste of time! What a cruel misuse of the whispers of the heart!
Unfortunately, most of us do not even notice when we begin playing psychological games (it is also called manipulation) in order to control or trying to possess another person, their freedom of expression, their way of living and thinking. It has become a norm.
Tell me, what do you have to lose by listening to your heart? Is it Pride? Ha ha… that makes me laugh. You see, you lost it already long time ago. Dignity? Tell me, what is dignity – a dear mother of pride? Status? Class? Face? Power? Tell me, who made you think you had it all? You either are that or you are not. To tell the truth, your pride and dignity and status and class and face and power can work as one grand chain and servant of love for yourself and the other human or living being. Exercise it!
When I act upon the whispers of my heart, I experience so much peace, so much beauty, so much love.
No, I did not get to this grand point of understanding in one day. It took me some time – some number of years, some painful mistakes made into wonderful lessons, but then one day, one split second everything changed, and so my life changed with it. I became wiser and brave enough to exercise my wisdom in real life.
It will not necessary work out as you may wish or the way you expect. Perhaps the response you would like to receive will never reach you, but…but at least deep in your heart you will always know that you have listened to the whispers of your heart and dared to act upon it. And by doing so you left no space for regret and its faithful sister ‘What if’.