The problem is, we all think we have tomorrow. But what if there was no tomorrow?
Last week, my father had major surgery for bowel cancer. From his first surgery 18 months ago, through treatment for a separate lymphoma and his re-diagnosis just a couple of weeks ago, his sense of determination and positivity has been exceptional. But this time I knew he was scared.
The morning of the surgery, I sat speaking with my mum. The conversation turned to how many years we all could have left together. In that moment, I felt fear like I'd not felt for a very long time. Not fear of death or loss, rather fear of wasting even one second of this precious life.
Do you know that the biggest regret of the dying is not what they did, but rather what that didn't do? The "sorry's" that were never spoken; not loving deeply and unconditionally; choosing not to attempt something new; never following dreams. They regret not appreciating the magical gift of life they were given. (Please watch this short video).
Photo by Aimee Vogelsang at Unsplash)
I was working with a client yesterday and we uncovered a belief that she has. She would rather be miserable and comfortable, than risk failure. Her belief is that unhappiness is a better choice than potential judgement. That being unfulfilled is preferential to not knowing how something will turn out. I explained to her that comfort is the mother of regret.
Statistics tell us she is not alone. 95% of the population will choose to live this "caged"* or "comfortable"* life (*terms used by Brendon Burchard). For some it is a conscious decision. For others, they genuinely do not understand that they have choice.
If you knew how much time you had would you be doing things differently? If so, has it ever occurred to you that you don't have another year, 5 years or 10 years? I never considered mortality when I was in my 20's or even 30's. I never thought about how the action that I did or didn't take, would effect my future self. From the food I ate, the books I read and the jobs I took to the relationships I didn't end, the opportunities I didn't take and the opinion I never gave.
The answer to this problem is to start living with intention. I strive, every day, to live a life by design. It has not always been that way. It was not that long ago that I found myself as an overweight, severely depressed, single mother, claiming benefits. I've been £50k in debt and blacklisted. I struggled with weight issues and eating disorders for 20 years of my life.
Our past does not define us nor dictate our future.
I am grateful that I discovered that I had a choice. It is my mission now to empower as many people as I can to open their eyes to intentional living. To recognise that every action (or non-action) has a ripple effect way in to our future. That we must DECIDE who we want to be. How we want to live and want we want to feel.
When will you decide?
Once I tell my clients that a belief is a decision, they have one of two choices. They continue with the belief that is robbing them of living fully or they commit to creating actions to cement in a new belief that breathes life in to their days.
I am pleading with you now, breathe life in to your days. Wake up and ask the question,
'Who do I decide to be today?'
As you fall asleep at night, ask the questions that have propelled Brendon Burchard to where he is today.
"Did I live? Did I love? Did I matter?".
What would your answers be?
You are an amazing person, born with incredible gifts and powers. Your duty is to embrace this thing we called life by experiencing it fully. This is my wish for you. There is no place in life for regret.
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