Free Up Your Mind With This Can Trick

I knew this really cool woman many years ago, who told me about a really cool trick: a short process to free up your mind. Find yourself a jar or a can, remove the label, and write “R” and “M” in capital letters with a marker, directly on the can.

The “R” is for regrets. Make a list of the top three regrets in your life. You can add regrets at any time, but start with the top three. Take a loose sheet of paper and describe each regret in detail (even if it is uncomfortable.) Don’t edit or re-read it when you are done. Just finish, and put the paper in the can.

The “M” is for mistakes. Make a list of the top three mistakes of your life. Describe them, and put them in the can next to your regrets. As you place each mistake into the can, express what you learned from them, out loud. When you are done, cover the can with tin foil or with saran wrap.

Once you are done with the can of mistakes and regrets, find yourself a new can. Take off the label, and write “W.” The “W” is for “winning.” Write as many instances or memories you have of feeling excited or successful. This can be as small as “I learned how to make tomato soup,” or as big as “I bought the house of my dreams.” The important thing is that, unlike your can of mistakes, you keep this can open and continue to add to it, as you move through life. We often allow ourselves to mentally accumulate disappointments, rather than victories. Ultimately, most of our mistakes and regrets in life will boil down to the same thing: we did not act the way we wished we acted, at the time. Things didn’t turn out how we hoped. Fortunately, there are many ways to switch the narrative and remind ourselves of the many moments in which things worked out exactly how we hoped they would. A can full of “winning” memories is just one trick to help you live in your empowered present.

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