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Life is Full of Shit Choices and Sometimes we Make the Wrong One

Updated: Aug 28, 2023

Have you ever felt like you are stuck in a situation where no matter what choice you make, it feels like the wrong one? Do you feel like you are forced to choose between two people that you care about? Do you feel like you have to do what someone else wants all the time?

I think we all feel this way sometimes. It can be choosing a major in college, choosing a mate, or choosing a city to live in. We make a choice, we go a little way down the road, and realize that we have chosen something that isn't making us happy.

We turn to go back, only to find that instead of a road behind us, there is a giant cliff where the road has fallen away. We can't retrace our steps, we can't go back to where we made the choice and choose again. We have to keep going forward with our chosen path and make the best of things.

When things like this happen in life, it can often lead to a sense of regret and hopelessness. It can lead us to suffer. But in understanding our own suffering, we can better learn to understand ourselves in a deeper way. We can acknowledge our feelings, accept them, and move past them.

This week I published a book on the principles of Buddhism, and it is these very same principles that can save me from regret in my current circumstances. It can teach me to let go of the cravings that are the cause of my suffering. It can teach me to release my attachments to outcomes. It can teach me to go back within and find the inner peace that is the natural state of my being.

Inner peace is the natural state of being for all of us, the problem is that we allow other things to muddy the waters in our lives, and we forget our true nature. We get caught up in the things we think we want or need, and we attach our happiness to outward circumstances in our lives.

True happiness and peace come from within. They come from an inner sense of knowing and wisdom. They come from acceptance of ourselves and our lives as they truly are.

We can accept that we have made a choice that is less than ideal, that we have made a mistake, learn from it, and move on. This acceptance allows us to return to our natural state of peace.

Our pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses our understanding.
~Kahlil Gibran

As our hearts break, we can allow ourselves to feel the pain. But we don't have to attach to either the pain itself, or the cause of our pain. We can feel it, release it, and move on.

We can continue down our path with compassion and love, and look for a door that will eventually lead us back to where we want to be, or the people that we want to be with. We can trust that time will work things out to our favor again in the future.

One of the problems is that we get so caught up in our suffering because of its feeling of immediacy. We want everything that we want right now. When we don't have it right now, instead of learning to be more patient, we allow ourselves to suffer.

By releasing attachment to outcomes, we allow ourselves the freedom to learn and grow. We allow ourselves to become better and stronger people. We learn to bounce back from disappointment. All of these are useful skills in building a better and happier life.

As we allow ourselves to learn from our own suffering, we can get to the root cause of all suffering: craving. Once we get to the root of that suffering, we can learn to release our cravings.

In Buddhism, we can do this by using the Eightfold Path. By doing so, we allow ourselves to follow the path of the Buddha to enlightenment.

One of the lessons of the eightfold path is practicing Mindfulness. This means, being completely present in this moment. We aren't looking forward with cravings and desires, or looking backward with regret. We are fully immersed in what we are doing.

When we feel our suffering, we can engage in practices like Mindfulness, Meditation and Yoga to bring us back to ourselves, and back to the present moment. We can learn to accept ourselves more fully, and return to our true nature of perfect peace.

If you feel like you have made a wrong choice in your own life, the only advice I can give you is to forgive yourself and move forward. Accept yourself and your life. Be mindfully present, and find your way back to a sense of peace.

If you are struggling to do this on your own, it can be helpful to work with a therapist or life coach why specializes in the kind of issues that you are facing. Having a compassionate, listening ear can help you to ease your pain and to learn additional coping skills.

Finding your way back to yourself and your faith can also be a solace for a heart that is in pain. When you practice your faith, it can help you learn to accept yourself more fully and forgive yourself for your mistakes in the past.


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