In The End…

“In the end, we only regret the chances we didn’t take.”

Sure, most of us could use a bit of encouragement to do those things which, though scary, hold the potential for great reward.  Growth only comes when we step outside our comfort zone.

But what about all those other chances we take?  The ones where we know there could be disastrous consequences but we take the leap anyway.  

And what about times when we choose one path over another and it doesn’t lead where we hoped it would?  

Or those chances we take which force us to turn away from parts of our lives we later wish we hadn’t neglected?

It’s not that we regret the chances we didn’t take.  We regret all the ways our choices didn’t result in the life we hoped we were building.  Sometimes, yes, that means we regret not acting, not risking, not doing.  But it also, maybe to a greater extent, means we are prone to looking back on the things we hoped would be different in our lives and tracing back to the decision which put things in motion, and in the end blaming our choice, our decision, for the outcome.

Sometimes we make good decisions which turn out bad.  Sometimes we make bad decisions which turn out okay.  And in the end, isn’t the important part that we always learn and try to do better the next time we must make a similar decision?

As I Look Back On My Life…

“As I look back on my life, I realize that every time I thought I was being rejected from something good, I was actually being redirected to something better.”

The funny thing is that we never know what might have happened if something in our past had gone differently.  Whether we assume that it would have turned out great or awful has a lot to do with what has happened to us since.

If we are essentially happy with how our lives are unfolding, we’re more likely to look back and see missed or denied opportunities as something that happened for the better.  We’re more likely to assume it wouldn’t have turned out the way we hoped at the time.

So, yeah, if you think your life has gone great, it’s easy to look back and see that these doors got closed for a reason.

But if, for instance, your life had sucked after those opportunities passed you by, you’d be more likely to see them as tragedies, that every time you wanted something good it was denied to you.

So, every time you think you’ve been rejected from something good, go look for something better.

“For everything you have missed, you have gained something else; And for everything you gain, you lose something else.  It is about your outlook towards life.  You can either regret or rejoice.”

You can regret.  You can rejoice.  You can actually do both at the same time.

However, I don’t think you can honestly look at your life and say that every time something beneficial happened to you, something else was taken away.  

We tell ourselves this stuff to make ourselves feel better when bad things happen, and then conveniently forget about how the system supposedly works when good things come along.  

Seriously, if we lost something every time we gained something, why would any of us strive to achieve anything?  

You can’t have everything you want, but missing out on something should make you reassess your priorities and refocus yourself on the next goal.  

And yes, if you want something you usually have to put in some kind of investment, but that doesn’t mean you’ve lost anything.  Nobody says they gained food by losing money.

You can either put some time and energy into being purposeful about what you try to achieve in life, or you can just let things happen and make up sayings to make yourself feel better about the outcome.

It’s not about your outlook.  It’s about your actions.

“What’s stopping you?  (That’s right.  Nothing.)”

Well, probably not nothing.  It’s likely some amount of fear, which can mean there are actual risks involved with whatever it is you’re considering.  

Or maybe you’re being held back by actual constraints like legal restrictions.

Perhaps you’re facing systemic inequality which makes it exponentially harder for you to gain the required access or resources than for most people.

It could be that you’ve already committed the necessary resources to some other pursuit, and your prior choice made this other goal less of a priority. 

Maybe you still need to develop some necessary skills before pursuing your goal.  

Maybe you are in some way incapable.  We can’t all do everything.

Maybe deep down inside, you don’t really want to do this.  

Or maybe there’s nothing stopping you, and all you needed was a lovely picture of some mountains to remind you of that.