Regrets dan skognes motivation blogger speaker teacher trainer coach educatorWoulda, coulda, shoulda. We have all succumbed to saying one of these from time to time. “I would have….” “I could have…” “I should have…” A few questions come to mind in regards to regrets:

1. If you could have changed something in the past, why didn’t you?

2. Did you learn the lesson? If not, why not?

3. Why don’t you change now? What is holding you back?

I think the reason that life is so hard on some people is they don’t ask those questions and they are unwilling to change. You can sigh and shrug it off with, “Que sera, sera…whatever will be will be.” The problem with that attitude is that it shirks self-responsibility and the outcomes will be far from positive.

Here are a few of my regrets:

  • That I didn’t always follow the advice Mom and Dad gave me. It turns out they actually were pretty smart people. Parents actually know what they are talking about! Who knew?
  • That I didn’t listen to the inner voice telling me, “Don’t do it!” I learned that lesson the hard way on more than one occasion.
  • That I did not learn early in life that the secret of contentment is having a grateful heart. This caused me grief in many ways because of the constant striving to have more. Thankfully, I understand that now. I have learned to be truly thankful for what I have.
  • That I hurt people I loved by saying or doing things that were selfish or insensitive. I am much better at not doing this now…probably because I have been humbled in the process and have seen the devastation that selfishness leaves.
  • That I ever let fear hold me back. Fear is the enemy of our destiny.

The good news here is I don’t live there. I don’t beat myself up for the woulda, coulda, shouldas of my life. That is wasted time. It serves no purpose other than to torment myself. I can’t change it, so why keep reliving it? There were some lyrics to a song that went, “Every road I’ve taken lead to my regret.” Don’t let that be your epitaph.

If you are one of those people who beats yourself up over the past, then I hope you ask yourself the questions above. Life is too short to be lived in reverse. Start fresh today. Change your mind, your heart, your habits, and your attitude if you want to live your life without regrets.


Dan Skognes

11 Responses to “Regrets”

  1. “If you could have changed something in the past, why didn’t you?” My question: If we can change the future for some of the kids why shouldn’t we. I have changed the future of about 50 kids who had shut -down. I have learned from these kids why they shut-down and can now confidently say I can get any shut-down kid in grade one to read within 4 months. This may sound arrogant but it is not and I say this because the guys who write on dyslexia do not understand when I tell them that almost all my students who had studied from me could read in Malay and Romanised Mandarin and yet were ‘DYSLEXIC’ in the English language.

  2. No sir, I am not saying dyslexia is unique to English. No one is sure what dyslexia means. Ask 10 people and you get 10 answers. I am saying that a majority of kids who are classified as dyslexic are just shut down kids who would not have shut down if they had been taught properly in kindergarten and primary one, in the English Language.
    Can you define dyslexia? Even the original definition was incorrect: “late 19th century: coined in German from dys- ‘difficult’ + Greek lexis ‘speech’ (apparently by confusion of Greek legein ‘to speak’ and Latin legere ‘to read’).”
    There are kids who shut down all over the world but they do not shut down when learning to read in languages like, Malay, Romanised Mandarin, Italian, Japanese etc. I request you to read my Facebook post today and the next few days and please give your comments.
    Happy Days.

  3. More than 50 years ago someone had said that dyslexics have a phonological awareness deficit and many since then have just echoed that without thinking. Echoing what others write on is what most researchers in US are good at. If dyslexics have a phonological awareness deficit pray tell me as to how they are able to speak well even in the English Language let alone other languages where they even read without problem. Tom Cruise is said to be dyslexic but he spoke well in English before learning to read at the age of 22. Almost all my past 50 students could read well in Malay but could not read in English. Please think along with me and do ask whatever questions you may have both here and in my Facebook posts.

    • Dan Skognes says:

      In all fairness to researchers, Luqman, we can’t say that “Echoing what others write on is what most researchers in the US are good at.” That is a very broad stroke and discredits the many researchers who do a great job of collecting data AND are able to add clarity to it. Generalities like that can be misconstrued as bigoted or ignorant, and I don’t believe you are either one. :o) Shalom! Dan

      • Yes, Dan, saying that most researchers are good at echoing does discredit many researchers. I regret saying that. I had read somewhere, more than 10 years ago that more than a 100 researchers agree that ‘Phonological awareness deficit’ is the main cause of children being unable to read. I had written about this to more than 20 researchers in US, NZ, Australia and from UK. After a few email exchanges they do not respond. I even wrote to some of the researchers from the Children of the Code who turn a deaf ear to what I had to say.
        Phonological awareness deficit cannot be the main cause of ‘Dyslexia’ as the kids who are classified as dyslexic whom I teach can read well in Malay and Romanised Mandarin where each letter has only one sound. Tom Cruise the actor who acted in Top Gun could speak well but could not read.

  4. About 15 years ago I stopped working and started learning about dyslexia and started teaching kids on a one on one basis. All the kids I have taught are what I would call shut down kids. Kids who shut down because they are confused. Here is something from Malcome Gladwell’s book ‘Tipping point’ : “If you take these two studies together – the toys study and the editing study- you reach quite a radical conclusion about children and television. Kids don’t watch when they are stimulated and look away when they are bored. They watch when they understand and look away when they are confused. If you are in the business of educational television, this is a critical difference. It means if you want to know whether – and what – kids are learning from a TV show, all you have to do is notice what they are watching. Preschoolers are so sophisticated in their viewing behaviour that you can determine the stickiness of children’s programming by simple observation.” Pg 102

  5. Malcome Gladwell came to that conclusion after extensive research. The show ‘Blues Clue’ was created with this point in mind and that show overtook Sesame Street.
    If a child can turn away from TV because he is confused how much more will he turn away from teachers who say a is apple one day (imagine the sound of the letter ‘a’ in apple.) The next day the teacher says ‘arm’ (here the sound of ‘a’ is completely different.) The next day she says ‘ace’ and on the same day says ‘around/about’. When kids are not told that all vowels have more than one phoneme or sound they shut down. I know about ‘R controlled sound’ etc – but would the kindergarten kid know this?
    God Bless.

  6. If the researchers of ‘The Children of the Code’ after spending millions or billions of US Dollars over more than 10 years can say that about 95 % of the kids who can’t read are kids who ABT (Ain’t being taught’) then I would think that most teachers do not teach the different sounds properly.
    If teachers who swear by Orton Gillingham and Wilson method of teaching can teach so called dyslexic kids to read, then these kids are not unteachable.
    Why is it that I am able to teach these kids one hour a lesson three times a week and able to wean a student within 4 months? Sorry if that sounds arrogant.

Leave a Reply to Dan Skognes Cancel reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: