Last week was Ash Wednesday, a time to focus on repentance and mortality.
I recently read the following article, about an individual who worked in palliative care and she noted the following themes when she asked people about regrets or things they might have done differently.
1. I wish I'd had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
2. I wish I didn't work so hard.
3. I wish I'd had the courage to express my feelings.
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.
I think there is something to be learned from those themes that seem rooted in fear and an unhealthy focus on self imposed limitations on what we can achieve.
I contrast those themes of regret with the following examples I found inspirational.
Here, you've got Fauja Singh, dude started running at 89. What's that, you say? Yeah, you heard right. 89. He's retiring from running at 101.
But first he has some unfinished business, he's going to run for women's rights and security.
Then you have this dude, Donald Cripps. Guy BASE jumped off of New River Gorge Bridge on Bridge Day. If you've been, the New River Gorge Bridge gives me the willies just driving over it.
"Donald Cripps climbs onto the platform. At 83, Donald is the oldest jumper in the field. He is a small man with a friendly face. Cripps was already retired when he started skydiving."
Life is short, our time and opportunities are valuable. Each of us has valuable goals that are worthwhile. We have the opportunity to improve our quality of life, to expand our outlook, to increase the time spent with family/friends/loved ones.
We have the opportunity to be kind to each other, and ourselves. Pursue and aspire to great things, and have gratitude that we have the opportunities to progress and grow, like we do.
What will you do for today to visualize and achieve the great things you are capable of?