Thursday, March 24, 2011

What If....

Every so often people of a certain age wonder what happened to the life they were supposed to have. They wonder if they went to the right college, married the right person, chose the right career. Each fork in the road leads to somewhere, and every so often people of a certain age wonder what would have happened had they taken the other path.

But here’s a secret…

It wouldn’t matter.

And here’s why it wouldn’t matter: No matter which path you choose, there is ALWAYS another path. No matter which path you choose, you will always wonder if the other one could have been different… or better… or worse. See, you’ll never know, so why make yourself crazy thinking about it?

One of the greatest spirit-suckers of all time are the words “What if…” If we spend our lives wondering “What if…” then we’re not really living the lives we have.

So here’s a question for you to ponder this week. What if there were no “what ifs.” What if this is it? What if this is the life you are meant to live? What if there were no other paths, no other choices, and nothing to distract you from your life now, as it is?

Would you live any differently?

Would you stop beating yourself up over the paths that you didn’t take, or regret the ones you did? Would you learn to appreciate the people in your life who love you instead of wondering if there are other people out there who might love you more? Would you start following your dreams instead of assuming they will always be out of reach?

The truth is… we only go around once (at least that we know of). The older I get, the less inclined I am to waste my precious time and energy wondering IF things would have been different IF I made different decisions. Maybe they would; maybe they wouldn’t, but until someone finds a break in the space-time continuum, there’s no way to know and nothing I can do about it anyway.

Which leads me to the challenge of the week. Think of one thing (but only one) you would have done differently if you could do it all over again and ask yourself this question: Is it too late to do it now? Wish you’d gone to med school? Apply now. Wish you’d learned piano? Take lessons. Wish you’d spent more time with your kids? Plan a fun weekend getaway… but be sure to take them with you!

As my favorite author (and groovy guy in his own right) Richard Bach says, “You are never given a wish without being given the power to make it true.” And then he adds the best part of the quote… “You may have to work for it, however.”

What do you want badly enough that you’re willing to apply a little elbow grease? What REALLY matters to you, now, in this life... the only life you have?

You, my fearless friend, are the captain of the ship called “YOUR LIFE.” Where will you steer that ship today?

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