Live the one that you are in…

February 1, 2021

In his Jack’s Winning Words blog to start off this week, Pastor Freed used this quote – “There’s another life that I mighthave had, but I am living this one.”  (Kazuo Ishiguro)

It is quite normal every now and then to muse about what might have been, had you made a different decision at some point in your past. However, it is not health (mentally) to obsess about what might have been. It is better that you spend that time planning what might yet still be. Look forward, not backwards.

I’ve posted here often about letting go of things in the past, whether it was a a traumatic event or just a poor decision, and moving on with life. Letting go of the past allows one to focus upon the here and now and to turn one’s attention to the decisions ahead. It matters less how you got here than where you plan to go from here. There’s not a bit of value in beating yourself up for past decisions; although there is hopefully some value in what you learned from the outcome of those decisions.

Spending time analyzing and agonizing over past decisions leads some into the downward spiral of depression. Since there is no way to change the past there seems to be no “solution” available and frustration and remorse can quickly turn into guilt and depression.

So, let’s not go there. Focus instead, as Kazuo advises on the life that you have now and spend you energy (mental and physical) on planning for where you want to go and how to get there. Perhaps yo can add to your prayers this thought – “Lord let me accept my life as it is and give me the strength and wisdom to do the things to make it better in the future.”

Taking the time to stop and examine the life that you have and the future that you would like may also cause you to re-evaluate some of your current goals or focuses in life. We (especially men) often get so “heads-down” focused upon goals like making more money or achieving more position and power at work, that we forget the reasons and the people that we started doing that work for in the first place.

You can’t go back and make good on all of the little league games that you missed with your son or the school play with your daughter that you didn’t see – that was a life you might have had, but didn’t. However, you can adjust your priorities and refocus for all of the future games and plays and recitals yet to come. It is not too late to change and make the future better.

Instead of constantly looking back through the door of what might have been in your life; close that door and instead open the door to the future of what yet can be. You are living this life. Make the best of it.

Have a great week of possibilities ahead.

Reflecting on prior lives…

July 5, 2016


“It’s no use to go back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.”  (From Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll) – as seen on the Jack’s Winning Words blog.

I often use the phrase, “In a prior life, I was…” to relate things from my past, usually about the different jobs that I had in different industries. I seldom dwell on the past and have no regrets about things changing; that’s just how life is. I might reflect on some past job ( a past life) as a boredmeans to recollect some of the co-workers and friends that I had while in that job. Most job-related friends tended to fall away, once I was no longer in those jobs; although I’ve still got one friend from a job-related relationship with whom I still play golf and socialize with.

Some people seem to think that if they try hard enough to keep those relationships alive they can recapture the moments from that past that they so fondly remember. I get newsletters and event invites several time a year from one such group from a prior life. This is a group of ex-Army guys trying to keep alive and relive our shared experiences in Viet Nam in the late 1960’s. I have only vague recollections of those experiences and little desire to relive them.

Another group that I get frequent emails from is constituted of “alumni” from a failed technology company that I used to work for. The group holds “reunions” a couple of times a year and keeps everyone updated on the latest goings on in each other’s lives via Facebook posts. I used to attend the reunions, but haven’t been to one in years, now. They tended to be events in which the only topic of discussion was the “good ole days” and people seeking new jobs. It became obvious that talking-2there was little that we had in common once the job that we all related to had vanished. As I reflect on the time when I was there it is now apparent to me that the only topic of conversation that we had at the various social gatherings that we had was job related. How boring of a time that must have been for our spouses.

So, the little quote from Alice in Wonderland makes perfect sense. I was a different person then; and I am a different person now. Today I tend to discuss real estate in social gatherings, rather than computers. The nature of a real estate career does not promote the close social ties that other, in-the-office type jobs might. I work from my home, so I don’t have a lot of social interaction with my real estate co-workers. We have social events during the year and the talk there tends to revolve around real estate deals – how boring that must be for our spouses.

smiling manSo, perhaps it’s OK to reflect on our prior lives once in a while, but none of us can go back and relive whatever fond memories that we might have. We were different people then. Maybe we can learn a few things from that reflection that might help us in our current lives; but we are different people now and must live in the present and perhaps still dream of the future.

Have a great today and let yesterday go!