If you think the price of winning is too high, wait until you get the bill from regret. This one stopped me in my tracks. I spent so many years living in regret, playing it safe, leaving the event early so I could do what I was “supposed” to do. I always thought I was doing the right thing because I was making other people happy by doing what they expected of me. I was fulfilling their expectations instead of my own. I was recently graced with a huge opportunity and I will fully admit I didn’t see it for what it was until it was too late. We had to leave the conference I’ve been talking about early for several reasons. We had a family emergency and a long drive home. In my heart, I knew I wanted to experience the whole thing but I was also afraid of having to get back to work on Monday and afraid of being tired and making a mistake at work that would get me even further behind. I’ve been beating myself up about it because I know we missed the end of something amazing. This is a low point for me, especially as someone who constantly expresses following the heart.
The good news is a low point is a great place to start from. It makes you hungry. It defines what you want and what you don’t want. That low point shows you the experience you want to hone in on and how to take the next steps to get there. See, it teaches you. It shows you the pieces of you that need to be healed (fear of time, missing out, disappointing others) and the pieces you need to let go of (the fear of disappointing others, the need for things to be a certain way). And let’s go back to that hunger: that low point gives you the drive to fulfill other pieces of yourself. The pieces you’ve possibly been ignoring. The pieces you’ve been missing that you may not have known you were missing—like how to rely on and trust other people. When you experience regret, that is possibly the best thing to come of it: it sharpens your vision to what you need to do. It gives you the answers for what you’re looking for moving forward. It becomes your motivation.
So I’ve been experiencing this before and after type of feeling. Yes, I have regrets from leaving before we should have, but I am also appreciative I now know I don’t want to miss out on these things again. I especially don’t want to miss out on them for fear. And even more, I don’t want those fears to be about disappointing others. I’m tired of disappointing myself! That’s all the motivation we need. What is it going to take to fulfill your expectations instead of someone else’s? Sometimes the price is high and we experience loss. Sometimes the price is a smack in the face that wakes us up to the opportunities right in front of us. No, no one enjoys regret. It’s a heavy burden to bear. But if we choose to stop carrying it and choose to start learning from it, that learning curve drops and we learn to fulfill our own destiny. No one will do that for us. We need to be who we are meant to be and that is it. Don’t live your life wishing you could have done something different. Live your life doing exactly what you’re supposed to do and that bill for regret sill never come.