I have made many mistakes in my life. I have done things I am not proud of. I have hurt and disappointed myself and others. And I have been hurt and disappointed by others. There are things I wish I had done differently.
But when I look back now I can really see how I have also learnt and grown from each of these experiences. They do not define me and they have often been pivotal in my journey and the creation of the person I am today. They have moved me toward a more authentic and meaningful life. Within this I find myself agreeing with Mark Twain.
I suspect when I am on my death bed looking back it will not be these things that I will regret, it will more likely be the things I was not brave enough to risk doing, that I wanted to do. My un-lived potential. And I get these things don’t have to be big and grandiose, although they can be too.
They can be ‘little things’, like laying on the grass in the sunshine more often, smelling the flowers, trying something new even if I am terrible at it, listening to the gentle quiet whisperings of the universe, of my heart, driving my son to have a surf after school and just hanging out with him, spending more quiet time with my partner, with the people I love, saying sorry, jumping on a plane and going to visit my brother in London even though I have other things I need to be doing and need to spend money on, speaking my truth.
The ‘little things’ feel like they are all about prioritising who and what is important to me and taking action on them. Are there ‘little things’ that you may regret not doing?
And then, this quote goes on to say: “So throw off your bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbour. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover”. This perhaps for me, feels more about the ‘big things’ and the intent with which I want to live my life. ‘Throw off your bowlines’, for me these are my fears, my doubts, my insecurities, my negative self-talk. ‘Sail away from the safe harbour’, not always easy for someone who often needs to feel ‘safe’.
‘Catch the trade winds in your sail’, which for me means letting go of control, allowing life to lead me and fully opening up and showing up to all that arrives. ‘Explore. Dream. Discover’, I love these words as an intent for how I want to live my life, both my inner life and my outer life. May we all continue to Explore, Dream, Discover what brings joy, authenticity and meaning to our lives.
With great warmth