OK. THIS is important.
You mustn’t be too busy for this. Not today.
You put off thinking about this, reading this, because you’re too busy today. And tomorrow is the same.
And because every day after that is also too busy, all of a sudden, the ‘too busy’ days are done.
And so is the chance to live your life differently.
Take five minutes today and check how things are, against the 5 regrets of the dying.
Here is the benefit of hindsight, given to you right now
You are hereby advised to take that gift now
Now is your chance to decide you’d like things to be different
We can do it together if you like. Here, I’ll go first
Here are the 5 things.
1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
Hmmm…ok, this is a good start, I’m good with this one
I’m a bit of a radical
2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.
Ah. Not so good. Lots of work. Work at work, and work at home. Always work to do
My wee man shouting for me to come and play, me saying, “in a minute, I just need to finish……….”
There was always something else on the list
He’s 20 now and gone to University. I can work as much as I like
OK. I can still make amends, if he’ll let me
I need to forgive myself for this one. I’m a single parent, I’ve been doing the best I can
For a lot of years I didn’t know that it could be done differently (how not to be with the work all the time) and certainly never reached the point of exploring how it could be different
I now know that it can always be done differently, and that I am infinitely creative and know how to find ways for it to be different
How are you with this one?
3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
I’m not too bad at this
Now that I know what my feelings are
Now that they’re not numbed out or buried so deep that I need a digger or quarry explosives to unearth them
A long time ago, a lovely man asked what made my heart sing and it was the saddest thing that I didn’t know
I’ve spent a lot of time since then allowing myself to notice (and been blogging about what makes life a pleasure for over two years now)
I’ve also learned a lot about expressing my whole range of emotions, not just the flowery easy ones, what Brene Brown refers to as being wholehearted
Which means sometimes there is pain. I feel it all now.
And me….I get credit for the unearthing and the feeling of the feelings and the expressing of them (that was a work of many, many years…still a work in progress)
You? You feeling creature you, how’s this one?
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
Not bad, but not great either
I’m such an introvert and so time with people is a finely balanced thing. Too much and I’m not. fun. to. be. with. at. all.
And if I’m working amongst people for many, many more hours than I can handle, I’m already all used up and just need to be quiet. It’s more the amount of work that I need to take care of so that I’m balanced and have space for friends too
I am blessed with friends who do more than their fair share of the keeping up. I am grateful.
And who accommodate and forgive my need to be quiet, sometimes for long periods, and don’t take it as a snub. I’m grateful for this too
How’s this one for you?
5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.
It’s the ‘letting yourself’ part that I didn’t get so much before
It was all work work, worry worry
There was never a break in the proceedings for it to dawn on me that I could be happy while I was doing what I was doing
I don’t know what I was waiting for….along the lines of what makes your heart sing….I didn’t know that ‘heart singing’ was on the agenda for me
I never gave any conscious thought to what would make me happy….too busy…work work, worry worry
And even that would have been to miss this point…this is suggesting that we can choose to be happy
I’ve been making a point of paying attention to what makes me happy (is a pleasure) for some time now (and blogging about it in The Pleasure Reports) and so I’m fairly fluent now
It hasn’t been so much ‘let myself be happier’ but let myself notice what makes me happy.
How about happier…do you let yourself be happier?
I’m now so passionate about everyone living lives of pleasure I’ve gone so far as to write The Pleasure Assessor to help everyone who wants to, look for where the pleasure is in their lives, and where it’s not
It’s like a more comprehensive version of the five things here, and you get to decide what the things are, that make you happy and that which would make you happier still if you were to make some adjustments.
People who’ve used it say things like
” This was a lovely way for me to step back and look at life from a different perspective.
I’m inspired by the pictures of how life could be that I’ve created and they’re nudging me gently into letting go of some things and building more self belief”
“I was exhuasted and focussing on the negatives. The Pleasure assessor helped open my eyes to what’s important in my life and what pleasure means to me. I have remembered that I love what I do, I can switch off from stress now and am finding life pleasurable again”
” The Pleasure Assessor is warm, it’s funny, it’s provocative, it’s clear, and most importantly it’s eminently useable. What a graceful tool, full of heart, that gets you directly to the core of awareness. Coaching doesn’t get better than this. And integral to the whole process, is that is a pleasure too. Perfect.”
Now I’m not one for blowing my own trumpet but…wow!
I’m so happy that it’s working that well for people
if you’ve decided it’s time….and you’d like to go a bit further than the 5 things above, then you could do a lot worse than to have The Pleasure Assessor take you gently, by the hand, through a look at how things are.
In the meantime, I’d love to hear how’s it looking for you on the 5 things?
Come and tell me in the comments
Love P x