Sometimes you are going to do something that, well, mortifies you. I know I do. Just did it the other day. I found myself obsessing about it. Argued with the past 10 times and lost each time. So here is what I did as my own self work to set me free….and what you can do next time you act in no one's best interest.
Cringe Cleaning 101
Apologizing is very underrated. Sometimes just saying, "I'm sorry,"can be the most amazing thing in the world. Look, I know I behaved in a way that I wish I hadn't and I am sorry. Really. I am sorry.
2. Find the the Thought that drove the action.
Every action is driven by a thought. Finding the thought that drove the "regrettable" action can help prevent the action from ever happening again. Do a model for the action and then find a new thought to drive a new behavior.
Note: If there was alcohol involved, this will be difficult to do because not thinking is most likely the problem. I mention this because there is a lot of cringe-worthy alcohol related actions.
3. Don't make it mean something that hurts.
Just because you did something you wish you hadn't, doesn't mean you have a defect, character flaw, or need serious help. Try not to over-dramatize. State the facts. Make it mean what it does mean: You made a mistake. (Your aren't a mistake.) You had a lapse in judgement. (You are not a bad person.) You did something you think is wrong. (There is not something wrong with you.)
4. Ask yourself: What's perfect about this? What can I learn from this? How do I want to feel about this?
5. Let it go.
Really. Let it go. Move on. You apologized. You did your work. The past is over. You can be free of it. The anxiety that comes when you argue with your past is no joke. You must release it so you can be your imperfect, but still awesome self.