Are you Over Your Regrets?

The following Video Blog has some of the written blog plus my rambling. :)

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” ~Mark Twain

I was looking at yesterday’s blog ‘Is Sadness Better than Disappointment?’ I received an overwhelming amount of email from that particular blog. You guys have SO many good stories! I hope you will feel safe sharing them with everyone here. Most people seem to want to take Sadness over Disappointment. Most people agreed that it’s easier to stay in their sadness than to take the risk of being disappointed. I think the people who said they would risk disappointment to try new things are on a good path.

I saw this quote from Mark Twain who of course had so many brilliant things to say! He used the word disappointment like regret. Regret is something I really want to avoid in life because it feels perhaps worse than any other thing out there. Regret can pin our focus in a negative way and it generally just sucks. There are so many meanings and situations with the word ‘regret’. “I regret not saying sorry before he died” is quite different than “I regret not taking piano lessons as a child”.

The kind of regret that is accompanied by death seems quite unfixable. We have to go through a lot of steps to get back to feeling ok about ourselves. When two people can come to a resolve about a long-term conflict, it’s like an elephant off your chest. If you didn’t quite get it fixed before they passed, you might be beating yourself up for years.
The piano lessons example is something I hear so much. You could put just about any musical instrument in there. You could also regret not going to college or university, eating better or exercising more.

Some people regret not being a better parent or a better child.

Did you notice Mark Twain said, “Twenty years from NOW”? I love that part the most. He didn’t say “When you are old” or “When you are an adult”; he said “Twenty years from NOW”. That gives you a start date to begin life NOW. We so often look at life as whatever you can do when you are young. But NOW is the beginning. It’s the coolest part of the quote. I almost didn’t catch it because the rest of the quote is talking about sailing, exploring, dreaming and discovering.

Life also does this to us. We are distracted by the fun words, the brightly-covered magazine covers, sunny days and parties. I am getting to love the things that are not so flashy. I can stare at ants running in a loop from one side of a sidewalk to the other. I can watch a spider spin a web. I can stand in a stupor at my back window watching the wind take one leaf on a mini journey. I am very interested in my own fingerprints.
I believe life is beautiful even without the sailing. Of course, he uses it metaphorically as an encouragement to grab life and seize the day. That’s pretty cool. But the realization that I can begin anything I want to in this very moment touched me deeper than any of it. It is only society that tells us some things are only for the very young. The world actually contradicts this by expelling oxygen.

One of my favorite all-time quotes is from Richard Bach. I saw it ages ago at a time when I was questioning my purpose here;

“Here is a test to find whether your mission on Earth is finished: If you're alive, it isn't.”

So, you are alive today…I guess you get to start something. :)

Regret is an awful thing. I agree. I have always done things to avoid regret. I have said in the past, “I don’t want my epitaph to read, ‘She was a good housekeeper’” meaning there was more to life than my vacuum and duster. Maybe we can just learn to sing while we clean instead of hating it so much. Maybe we can just let the wind take us on a surprise journey instead of shoving it violently in a direction.

If we simply enjoy our moments whatever we are doing, we can avoid regret.

But even if we feel like we’ve screwed up or missed some giant opportunity in yesteryears, are we supposed to be looking back at all? Sure, we can learn from past mistakes, we have a memory for a reason, but right NOW is our new beginning. Having new beginnings is the coolest gift EVER.

I do love to explore, dream and discover though. I think we should get back to that instead of forcing life so much.

I wonder what mess I will get myself in today that I won’t clean up…
Karen :)

(I have used up my quote quota) ;)

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