What is the biggest risk in life?
Regret is a part of our lives: either we go for something we really want, or regret that we didn’t try. We are so good at persuading ourselves to stay exactly where we are because it seems safe and comfortable. What are some examples of this? You could stay in a bad marriage because the prospect of divorcing and making it on your own seems terrifying. You may stay stuck in a job you hate because the risk of leaving your secure paycheck is too frightening. Women stay stuck in their lives not because they want to, but because the alternative is scary and unknown. When we don’t understand something, we get overwhelmed by it, stressed by it, and in return it paralyzes us.
Women in retirement tend to look at regret in a different way. It feels as though life has sped past so quickly, and now they want to make sure their lives mean something. In your life, you will go through different stages. You’ll encounter times when you are living in the scarcity mode, and there just never seems to be enough. There isn’t enough time, enough money, enough of you to go around and get everything done! Have you ever experienced this?
As you progress through the stages of life, there will be moments when you decide to remain complacent, and you go on cruise control with your life decisions. Everything seems just fine, so why change anything? However, if you bravely progress with your life’s goals, it’s more likely that you will become successful. You’ll feel very good about your life and confidence will exude from you in every direction.
But as retirement comes knocking at your door, you’ll start shifting to the last stage which is Significance. How significant of a life have you led until now?How much of an impact have you had on the world and the lives around you?
As you can imagine, regret comes up most often in the significance stage. Do you regret staying in an unpleasant situation for too long because it brought the comfort of a “known” rather than the fear of the unknown? If you stayed in a career because it felt comfortable, but you didn’t have the opportunity of creating a major impact, then you might regret it that choice.
If you gave up years of your life in a bad relationship because it was safer than leaving your partner to start over, you might regret it. Every time you look back on your life, try to ponder the big question: what do I regret the most? When you do this, you start to change your priorities and your values will shift.
Make it a continuing goal to reflect back on the past year and see what you wished you had risked in order to have what you really want. Reflecting on your goals and what you risked achieving them on a regular basis will keep you on a path of improving your life. It will help prevent the regrets, but more importantly, force you to focus and prioritize your life. You need to always place your quality of life first.
The great news is you are always one step away from living your best life, your ideal life, the life you DESERVE! Whenever you feel stuck in some aspect of your life’s journey, reflect on what got you to where you are now. Strive for clarity over what it is you really want in life and identify the choices you have NOW to get you there. Remember, every day you remain stuck is another day you trade your quality of life for what you believe is safe and comfortable. It’s another day you are settling in your life.
Everything takes risk. In the end, your choice is risk it or regret it.
What will you decide?