Recently, I celebrated a birthday. For some reason, I have been hearing the words: shoulda, woulda, coulda. Maybe I am paying extra attention to these words since I am older and hopefully wiser. I thought it would be interesting to dissect the meaning since these are excuses and regretted words.
WOULDA and COULDA– I think these are excuse words. Here is an example, “I woulda/coulda BUT__________________.” Another way to say the same thing with personal accountability is, “I could have done more.”
SHOULDA- This word is officially added to my list of things never to say. I have a plaque in my house that reads, “Destined to be an old woman with no regrets.”
SHOULDA is a regret word. I have heard unhappy people use this word often. They can’t fix “it” or try something different because it is too late.
To avoid the SHOULDA moments, look ahead. Ask yourself what life will look like in 20 years. If you see yourself unhappy and full of regrets, change your course.
My mother said something years ago that made me laugh. I told her that some individuals are encouraged to write a letter to deceased people who still “haunt” them with unresolved issues or regrets. Her response was typical “all Eleanor.” She paused, looked at me, tilted her head and said, “How do you address the letter, GRAVE?”
This suggestion made no sense to her which explains why she lived to be in her eighties and died peacefully. I witnessed how she handled a heart-breaking event with love, grace and forgiveness.
So, watch out for the woulda, shoulda, coulda moments in life. Strive to have NO regrets and live with greater self-respect.