The other day a thought came to me suddenly while I was pumping gas. There I was doing something that was routine and mundane when all of the sudden, some young guy pulls up in his flashy car with music blaring. I observed him from my pump and as I watched him complete his transaction I thought to myself, "this guy is probably in his 20's and I'm sure he's living his life like he wants." Would I do anything different if I were able to go back to my early 20's?"
The answer to that question is YES! There are quite a few things I would do differently. I'm not one who likes to dwell in the past so I immediately turned the question into my present experience and asked myself. "When I'm in my 40's & 50's, is there anything about my life now that I would have wished I'd done differently?"
Once again the answer to that question is YES! So immediately I began to rattle off a list of things that I have total control over that I would have wished I done if I looked back 10-15 years from now. We only have 1 life to live and it would be a shame to live under our fullest potential. Especially if we have a choice not to. With that said, I thought I'd share some of these "do differently" things with you all. I'm gonna pretend that it's 15 years into the future and I'm looking back to my life as it is today. What would I wish I had done?
- Looking back I would wish that I took more pride in my appearance. I'm sure that as the signs of aging begin to show I will look back at the days when my face was wrinkle free and would have regretted not taking better care of it.
- I would wish that I was more diligent in my work out regimen and focused on creating more muscle tone.
- I would have regretted not spending more time with my friends and family.
- I'd wonder why I wasn't obsessed with growing my business.
- I would kick myself for continuing to trade hours for dollars.
- I would go back in time and operate with a fearless attitude.
- I'd wonder why I didn't make the effort to make sure my hair looked beautiful every day.
- If I could go back, I'd be more creative with my fashion choices.
- I'd wished I bought by dream car.
- I'd be purposeful in not living the same day twice.
- I would wish I traveled much, much more.
- I would be punishing myself for not expressing more creativity in my daily life.
- I would have wished that I prayed and meditated daily.
- I would kick myself for spending so much time mindlessly surfing the internet.
- I'd wonder why I haven't given more to others.
The list would go on. This is a huge wake up call for me. I could be doing so much more. I don't want any regrets 10 years from now so I'm committed to doing what I can to make some of these things a reality for me. Talking about it is only half the battle. Now I'm ready to put some of these wishes into real action. I learned from one of my co-workers that whenever there is a list of things to tackle, I should look for "levers." Levers are things that I can do that make an impact on several other things on my list. Glancing back over my list of "should haves" I would say that levers include having a fearless attitude and creating passive income steams. This will allow me more time to travel, spend time with my family, become more creative, give more, etc.
Now that I've thought this out. I can now create my next set of goals. I believe that this is the first step to something big. I have a choice in how I want my life to be and I chose to live without regrets. I know what I need to do and I know what my focus should be. There's a clarity that I'm feeling that I haven't had in a while. I will continue to ask myself this question of what would I regret doing (or not doing) 5 or 10 years from now. This will help me keep my priorities in order and keep me focused on living the life I want to live. So now the work begins. Most gurus who tell you about achieving your goals will ask you to start with your why. I've had my why's in the past but somehow I feel like it wasn't strong enough to compel me into consistent action. Knowing that I could possibly regret the choices I am making today is a strong enough WHY to get me into real action.
I know that this entry is a bit off-topic but I felt some strongly about this revelation that I felt I had to share. My intention is that the levers I pull are powerful enough to also make a great impact on this blog as well.
Take a moment to identify you'd do differently in your life if you were looking back. It's not too late to make a difference. Now's the time! No regrets.