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Happiness turned to me and said, ‘It is time. It is time to forgive yourself for all of the things you did not become. It is time to exonerate yourself for all the people you couldn’t save, for all the fragile hearts you fumbled with in the dark of your confusion. It is time, child, to accept that you don’t have to be who you were a year ago, that you don’t have to want the same things. Above all else, it is time to believe, with reckless abandon, that you are worthy of me, for I have been waiting for years.’

Sometimes you just have to let yourself off the hook. Forget everything you didn’t check off your to-do list, forgive yourself for any mistakes, and stop dwelling on everything you think you could have done better. The past is behind you, and it can only control you if you let it. So let go of what you should have done and focus on the best you can going forward.

Even though there are days I wish I could change some things that happened in the past, there’s a reason the rear view mirror is so small and the windshield is so big. Where you’re headed is much more important than what you’ve left behind.

I can respect any person who can put their ego aside and say, ‘I made a mistake. I apologize, and I’m correcting the behavior.’

You did the best you could with the knowledge you had in that moment. It’s easier to look back at an event and see a better choice or pathway because we already learned from our experience. Hindsight happens after the lesson, so we can’t condemn ourselves for not knowing the lesson before we learned it.

If you made a mistake, apologize. If you are thankful, say it. If you are confused, ask questions. If you learn something, teach it. If you are stuck, ask for help. If you are wrong, admit it. If you can unselfishly give, give. If you love someone, tell them, now.

Sometimes deciding who you are is deciding who you’ll never be again.

The beautiful thing about life is that you always change, grow, and get better. You aren’t defined by your past. You aren’t your mistakes.

The butterfly does not look back at the caterpillar in shame, just as you should not look back at your past in shame. Your past was part of your own transformation.

A mistake that makes you humble is better than an achievement that makes you arrogant.

Be kind to past versions of yourself that didn’t know the things you know now.

The best apology is simply admitting your mistake. The worst apology is dressing up your mistake with rationalizations to make it look like you were not really wrong, but just misunderstood.

A moment of patience in a moment of anger saves you a hundred moments of regret.

To get over the past, you first have to accept that the past is over. No matter how many times you revisit it, analyze it, regret it, or sweat it, it’s over. It can hurt you no more.

Practice the pause. Pause before judging. Pause before assuming. Pause before accusing. Pause whenever you’re about to react harshly, and you’ll avoid doing and saying things you’ll later regret.

Life is too short. Grudges are a waste of perfect happiness. Laugh when you can. Apologize when you should and let go of what you can. Take chances. Give everything and have no regrets. Life is too short to be unhappy. You have to take the good with the bad. Smile when you’re sad. Love what you got and always remember what you had. Always forgive but never forget. Learn from your mistakes but never regret. People change and things go wrong, but always remember, life goes on.

Let the past make you better, not bitter.

Life is short. Say what you’ve wanted to say. Do what you’ve wanted to do. Don’t wait until the only thing you can say is, ‘I wish I’d had the courage to do it sooner.’

You have this one life. How do you want to spend it? Apologizing? Regretting? Questioning? Hating yourself? Dieting? Running after people who don’t see you? Be brave. Believe in yourself. Do what feels good. Take risks. You have this one life. Make yourself proud.

You know you’re on the right track when you become uninterested in looking back.