you think you’re SUPPOSED to be.”
This is something I have struggled with literally my entire life. And because of it I have spent MANY years living in regret, frustration and self-loathing. I have a problem with looking back on my life nearly constantly and beating myself up for all the things I didn’t do, wish I could redo, and obsess about how I can turn it around and use it to do good now and in my future.
Because if I’m honest, my life is nothing like how I planned or envisioned growing up. Half the time I look at myself and feel like I barely know or like myself at all anymore.
But this is only because I have never let myself BE my TRUE self. I have spent basically my entire life comparing myself to others, feeling bad about myself, believing I wasn’t good enough the way I was as I was in the moment, and ultimately compromised on nearly EVERYTHING in my life.
But no more!
I am FINALLY (thank you Lord) accepting who I am and embracing it. And I’m diving into it full force starting today. I might have wasted many years compromising on my true self and what I really want in life but now is the time to turn it around and get back on the path I was meant to be on all along.
I’m grateful to be a writer and to have this super analytical brain. It gives me a chance to find the positive in a seemingly wasted life that has caused me so much anger, regret and shame for my “poor life choices”. And gives me an opportunity to create meaningful written work that can potentially encourage others who have struggled with the same issues as well.
Because I know I’m not alone with this. Many people I have observed are not completely satisfied with their lives. I believe this is because most people are also not living as their authentic selves. They’ve spent years like myself, pushing their true passions and talents down, sacrificing one vision for another “more practical” one in order to live as they have been programmed they are “supposed” to. But then, are left feeling stale and always a little bit frustrated.
If you’re NOT one of these formally tortured souls then good for you! I mean it. Please share with me your positive and empowering advice on how you did it in the comments below.
But for the rest of us, I want to encourage you that even if you feel like you wasted your life and haven’t come anywhere near reaching your fullest potential, that it’s still not too late to try. If you’re still alive and kicking you can still turn your life around and make it what you really want. Or at least much closer to it.
I cover all this in more detail in my upcoming book “Better Late Than Never”. It’s coming soon, guys, I promise! I’m just in the final editing stage.
This book is a labor of love and my attempt to live as authentically as possible and finally start creating the life I have always wanted. I’ve wasted so many years trying to be someone else, changing myself to fit someone else’s narrative and disapproving of myself. But not anymore.
I am little sad to say that this decision to focus on what my true heart desires- writing books, music, musical plays, and just plain continuing to be a “mental health advocate”- means I will be closing the doors on some of my other more entrepreneurial pursuits such as my store The Affirmations Gift Shop.
I’ve worked in retail long enough (even wrote a one-act musical play about it titled “Retail! The musical) and I’ve had to be honest with myself: When I’m on my death bed and looking back on my life, I won’t be thinking “Gee, I wish I spent 12 hours a day standing around, selling merch in my own store” (which is a fine dream, btw, it’s just not MINE).
No, I’ll be kicking myself for all the things I didn’t get to say with my life. The books I didn’t finish writing, the plays I wrote that no one ever saw, or the catchy songs that fed my soul to write that no one got to hear. And I’m not going to do that to myself.
I spent most of my life being a tortured soul full of regret and depression from wasted potential and seemingly lost dreams. I’ve ruined more relationships, jobs, and sleep because I couldn’t shut my brain off with its obsessive misery. I’m not going to do that to myself anymore. I owe my future self. I refuse to regret the rest of my life I have left.
And if you struggle with regret, you shouldn’t either. Be determined to be honest with yourself and what you want out of life.
Who and what do you want to look back and see when you’re at the end of your life? Let’s make that a reality. Baby steps is all it takes. It’s BETTER LATE THAN NEVER to at least try.