Short and sweet – I think having regrets is an inescapable part of ones life. It’s impossible to not look back, no matter where you are in life, and say to yourself “I regret not doing blah blah blah”. I mean, yeah, sure we can say that we don’t really have any regrets, but even then, we really are just being okay with whatever we seem to regret – there is still that sense of regret, no matter how big or small. Yet, a lot of us think that we can honestly live a life without regrets by doing anything and every thing that strikes us at any moment.
However, in my very humble opinion, doing anything and everything JUST in a fruitless bid to not have regrets is the same as having regrets.
See, it is similar to FOMO or Fear Of Missing Out – you have this fear of ‘missing out’ on everything that you are always doing everything. However, in your quest to not miss out, in the end, you do miss out, possibly on more than you would have if you didn’t have FOMO.
For example, 5 of your friends invite you to 5 different activities on a Saturday. All 5 of them are around the same time, say, between 3pm to 10pm. And, having the FOMO mentality, you obviously don’t want to miss out on any one of them, so you make it a point to go to all of them. How long do you stay at each friends activity? What do you bring? By making it to all of your friends activities you miss out on being fully in the moment in all of their activities. You will be concerned about the time, making conversations shorter and to the point and stories less interesting and meaningful because you ‘need’ to be some place else.
Say one of them is a baby shower. Another one someone is celebrating their 30th birthday. Another one is an engagement party. You’re long time best friend is having a get together at their place. You’re other friend just needs someone to talk to.
What do you do? Who do you go to?
By making this attempt to be at all 5 activities, you really aren’t at any of them. You aren’t in the moment. You’re there, but you aren’t really there.
Which leads me to my conclusion – that you can’t possibly be in all the moments.
I think that by realizing that there will always be something that we will miss out in life, we wouldn’t be thinking of them as ‘regrets’ – we would be thinking of them as moments that didn’t happen because something else, something better, something wonderful happened in its place instead.
Be in the moment. Be present. Just… be.