I believe there are 2 types of regrets:
Regretting the things we wish we had done … and regretting the things we wish we had not done!
I chose to write about regrets today because I am knee-deep at this time in my life in a situation that has made me experience regret – and – I also received a blog on the Top FIVE Career Regrets which I think is worth mentioning …
Living with regrets …
One thing we need to remember is that when we are faced with regret – we need to ACT/ DO SOMETHING by asking ourselves – NOW WHAT? So you messed up – you did something you wish you had not done/ or that you had done. Well, one thing is for sure you cannot undo the deed or go back and do it (oh the times when I wish I could have actually gone back in time) – you can only move forward. In moving forward, take the time to identify what you want to do in order to make a decision that fits your beliefs and what YOU actually want. Often, we are so worried about making a decision (the wonderful What if’s) not because we don’t know exactly what we want to do – but, unfortunately because we are SO WORRIED about others’ judgment of our decision that we do not actually take the time to listen to ourselves. More often than not, the times I have regretted are times when I either let someone else make a crucial decision for me – or I just didn’t listen to myself and relied on logic in making my decision. Then there’s a lot of wasted time thinking about the past and what I could have done differently, or the key moment/ turning point that would have made the whole difference. The reality of the fact is that no matter what you THINK … you can only move forward. So, embrace your feelings of regret, sadness, anger, frustration etc. that surround the situation and figure out what you will do NEXT … in THE PRESENT moment and your FUTURE that you will pave!
This same approach relates to the choices you make in regards to your career.
As I mentioned, I received a blog on the top 5 career regrets by Daniel Galuti that I wanted to share with you because, let’s face it, you are going to spend more than half of your time at work – you better be making it worth it!
His blog is based on research that asked 30 professionals between the ages of 28 to 58 “what they regret the most about their career to date”
“The group was diverse: I spoke with a 39-year-old managing director of a large investment bank, a failing self-employed photographer, a millionaire entrepreneur, and a Fortune 500 CEO.”
Here is the top 5!
1. I wish I hadn’t taken the job for the money – WOW, I was actually surprised to find this as number 1. I worked with students and this was the main reason they were deciding to work for a company… let’s face it people MONEY DOES NOT = HAPPINESS … and that is a fact. It might make your life easier so you can indulge yourself in consumerism but it won’t make you have a fulfilling and genuinely happy life.
2. I wish I had quit earlier – hmm … these regrets are filled with WHAT IFs – that are actually related to the first top regret. The fear of not being able to find another job or being tight financially is, as far as I am concerned, one of the main reasons why people don’t quit their jobs … stability versus happiness …
3. I wish I had the confidence to start my own business – I have to admit it is scary because the possibility of messing up is exactly that, a possibility. But you can never know your potential if you never try. Your business does not have to be the next Staple, it can be something very small – but take the time to write a mission for yourself so you know exactly what you want to offer and who you want to attract.
4. I wish I had used my time at school more productively – Too many of us are in a rush to start “LIFE” only to look back to realize that we didn’t live. Enjoy your time at school – have fun – party – make new friends – try new things – go on adventures and PLEASE TAKE THE SUMMER OFF AFTER YOU GRADUATE! 4 months of vacation should never be minimized for a lifetime of work!
5. I wish I had acted on my career hunches – Galuti identifies these as the “now or never moments” – TAKE THE LEAP!
Remember to take the path of RISK … trust me there will only be wonderful things and lessons to learn on the other side even if – in the beginning you are faced with challenges – it will only make your life more EXCITING and worth TALKING ABOUT!
“Never regret anything because at one time it is exactly what you wanted” … but what if it wasn’t … you better start making CONSCIOUS CHOICES that make you NEVER regret a single thing in your life!