Some say you shouldn’t regret, but I think part of living and enjoying life is about making mistakes and trying not to make them again.
Today, I turn 28 and I’m appalled (getting so close to 30)! So I can’t help but look back at the last 20 years and think about how far I’ve come along with the the things I didn’t do or should have done earlier. I’m an advocate of learning from other people’s mistakes because we don’t live long enough to make them all ourselves…so hopefully you garner something worthy from my small realities. Are you ready? The 5 things I regret most:
#1 Not starting sooner.
If you have any idea of what you might be interested in doing, start immediately, explore your options, and test the waters. You have nothing to worry about except yourself when you’re young – no major responsibilities nor dependents. This is your time to do something crazy and fail.
#2 Working too much.
Looking back over the last decade, the only thing I can recall doing was work…I can’t believe I spent so much time of my life working that it’s all I remember doing. Everyone around me always told me, “You have your whole life to work, why don’t you live a little?” But I was always worried…the thing is I wasn’t born privileged. I had to bust ass for everything I had from my car to insurance, phone, and education, but thinking about it now, it was senseless to put that burden on myself at such a young age. And as a repercussion, I worked my youth away all the way through college – what a waste of those golden years. There’s not much you need to worry about at 16, but damn, I was always worried. Please don’t do that to yourself.
#3 Caring too much about money.
Like point #2, I obviously worked because I was worried about money. The consequences here – I don’t have many adventures to reflect on. I had always wanted to study abroad in Japan, travel, attend university far from home, work in a creative field, but I never had the guts to because I was worried about the money. While this mindset put me in a financially sound situation today, it was at the cost of “would have been” amazing life experiences. Put me back to my early 20s and I’d give the money up to do all those things…
#4 Not keeping in touch with people.
We’re all busy and have our own roadblocks to work through so it’s easy to lose track of people. But calling someone or sending them a letter doesn’t require that much effort…it’s really sad to see how many people I’ve let go for simply not being existent in their lives. I wish I did a better job of being there…
#5 Not saving more.
I always joke that growing up, I didn’t have much so once I had my own earnings, I’d kinda just went crazy and bought whatever I wanted – that turned out to be quite a bit of junk. I wish I’d learned the value in investing earlier on and put that money to something more useful…the earnings could have been exponential by now. Bummer.
Image Source Credits – Julia Trotti