Regrets – Don’t Let Them Sabotage You

I read Trevor Noah’s book “Born a Crime’ months ago and it only made me love him more. I already knew that he was an extremely talented comic, but I didn’t know how much he loves and respects his mom. Even feared her at times, because she was a tough lady and held him to high standards. I love that she made him go to several churches including a Black church, White Church, and a youth group. He got plenty of church growing up. I would say his mom did a spectacular job raising him, particularly under the circumstances where Trevor’s interracial status was criminal in his South African home. And with Trevor’s quick wit, he must have been a handful.

So many topics resonated with me, but the one that has really stuck with me involves regrets. Life is short which is why we need to live each and every day to its fullest. With that, he wrote “I don’t regret anything I’ve ever done in life, any choice that I’ve made. But I’m consumed with regret for the things I didn’t do, the choices I didn’t make, the things I didn’t say. We spend so much time being afraid of failure, afraid of rejection. But regret is the thing we should fear most. Failure is an answer. Rejection is an answer. Regret is an eternal question you will. Never have the answer to.”

For myself there are times I hold back sharing things for fear, sometimes fear of rejection probably, other times fear of how they might interpret it. I might hold back my enthusiasm for fear they don’t share it. Sometimes I keep quiet because I don’t want to look silly saying the wrong thing. Other times I don’t reach out when I know I should because I’m embarrassed or concerned with how it might appear. I’ve limited things at work for fear of failure and talked myself out of things because of how it might look to others.

I want to print out Trevor Noah’s notes on regret in a huge font and put it on my dash or mirror as a constant reminder. I love that he doesn’t regret things he’s done. I know, after reading this book, he’s made his fair share of mistakes, but I think his point is that he learned from those mistakes and they helped make him the person he is today. I want to live each day without regret. I want to do my best to say the things that need to be said, tell people I love and appreciate them. I want to make hard choices that challenge me to be better every day.

We don’t grow or make a difference in the world unless we put ourselves out there, take risks and get out of our comfort zone. A mediocre life is boring. I love that as I’ve gotten older, I’ve learned to worry less about what others think of me and worry more about how I feel about myself. I just might have to make a sticker for my water bottle with Trevor Noah’s reminder. Don’t regret the things you didn’t do or say.

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