What are the chances you WON’T regret taking in life?
Everyone comes to a point in their life when they face a decision that involves risk. Perhaps it’s having a baby; starting or ending a relationship; or perhaps changing careers, changing cities or changing their entire life.
What if it’s you? Do you twist or stick?
You look at all the money you could lose; the humiliation you could face; the pain of having to start all over again with another person, or another job, or perhaps another country.
Is it going to be worth it?
If you’re facing such a decision, this may make it easier for you; here are six and a half chances you won’t ever regret taking.
1. Taking the chance to fail.
No one ever regrets trying and failing, not afterwards. If you gave it your best shot and came up short, at least you won’t die wondering. Yes, you could look dumb in front of your friends when that beautiful girl says no to a date; you could lose money if the business venture goes wrong; you could come back with your tail between your legs if you couldn’t stick out that new life in Spain or Thailand or Vladivostock. But what if you win out? And even if you don’t, suddenly you’re a risk taker and you’ll look different—to yourself and everyone who knows you.
2. Taking a chance on yourself.
You can’t go to your grave thinking you’re not old enough or young enough or smart enough or good enough, not if you want to live a life well lived. No one ever regretted taking a chance on finding out they were more than they thought they were. No one ever regretted backing themselves to try—even if you fall short of your goal you will find out along the way that you’re much more than you think you are.
“I wondered about the explorers who’d sailed their ships to the end of the world. How terrified they must have been when they risked falling over the edge; how amazed to discover, instead, places they had seen only in their dreams.”
― Jodi Picoult, Handle With Care
3. Taking a chance on feeling afraid.
Courage is not the absence of fear; it’s soiling your shorts and facing the fear anyway.
Why would anyone run with bulls, dive with sharks, or jump off 250 meter bridges? I did all those things in the span of one month a few years back and I have no regrets. Was I terrified? You betcha. But I found out I could face and beat my fears, and that’s the most important lesson of all.
But you don’t just do it for fun; your fears stand in the way of your success—you’re afraid of letting that guy you love into your life; afraid of striking out on your own in business; afraid of giving up your day job to following your passions full time. Feeling afraid and risking all anyway is one chance you’ll never ever, ever regret.
4. Taking a chance on love.
Yes, you could really end up hurt here; but if you wait to find the perfect man, the perfect woman, you may find out that they don’t exist or that they’re a perfect bust when you do find them. Your job isn’t to find love, but to find out the walls you have built against it.
“A ship in harbor is safe—but that is not what ships are for.”
John A. Shedd
5. Taking a chance on your dreams.
I worked on an ambulance for many years and took many people on their last ride. Some of those folk knew what was coming, and so we had some interesting conversations. I can’t reveal much of what they said to me but I can tell you this; the ones who had followed their dreams had no regrets whatsoever, no matter how things turned out; the ones who didn’t mourned the waste of it all deeply.
6. Taking a chance on your own worth.
This may mean you need to fight for what you deserve—or it could mean being strong enough to let you go of what you don’t deserve, especially in relationships. In some cases, you risk losing the relationship or perhaps losing your job or your promotion. But if you also gain your self respect, that’s a chance you won’t ever regret taking.
“It seems to me that people have vast potential. Most people can do extraordinary things if they have the confidence or take the risks. Yet most people don’t. They sit in front of the TV and treat life as if it goes on forever.”
7. Taking a chance on feeling
The biggest risk of all: many of us close off big parts of ourselves because others could hurt us, or betray us, or leave us. We don’t think we could stand it.
But feelings of deep loss, inconsolable grief—these feelings only result from loving deeply. But if we never know what love feels like, what grief is, then we have not lived a real life.
So taking a chance on feeling—however it comes out—that’s not something we should ever regret.
… And taking the half chance.
You know the moment when you have to say “yes” or “no” and you don’t have time to think; the man who asks you if you’d like a drink, but you’re late for an appointment; the friend who rings you and says there’s a big job opening in London but you have to get to the interview across town in an hour; the house that’s just come on the market at a bargain price and you’re not sure if you can afford it.
These are the half chances that you look back on later in life. Can you trust your instincts? If you can, then follow them. You’ll never regret it.
“First you jump off the cliff and you build wings on the way down.”
So go ahead. Take a chance. If it’s one of the seven and a half chances above, then what do you have to lose?
Because there are just some chances you won’t ever regret, no matter what the gods decide.
Featured photo credit: Geralt via pixabay.com
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