Refuse to live with the regrets of the past and dread of the future.


When we live in the past, we lose our peace. When we lose peace, we lose joy and losing joy opens the door to impatience. In our impatience, we try to hurry our journey along and begin to make choices based on feelings and emotions rather than sound judgment. The minute we do this we are back in the throes of regret.

Dread is the opposite of regret. Dread places us in the future and removes us from the present. Where you find dread, you will often find procrastination and indecision. When we dread something, we will put if off and then regret that we didn't do it. What we really need to do is make a decision to do it. Laboring over a decision is a form of procrastination. Often, the very thing we dread is the very thing that can open the door to new opportunities and put us back in the present. You will never find joy when you try to live in the future. An important principle in life's journey is learning that dreading something is usually more painful that doing it.

For nearly a year, I agonized over leaving my job at the hospital. It paid well, had great benefits but was a cesspool of negative thinking, unchallenging and after 14 years I was still going nowhere. Every morning was a 'ritual of dread'. I am certain my husband viewed it more as a 'ritual of the dead'. I had lost every ounce of enjoyment for life yet refused to make a decision to change the situation. In all honestly, I had made a decision. My decision was to do nothing, change nothing and continue to complain (to my husband and anyone else who would listen) about my unhappiness. I believe the final straw for my husband was when I started voicing resentment toward him. My resentment stemmed from the fact that he enjoyed his work and was genuinely happy with his life and I wasn't. It was at this point my husband finally said, "Do something to change the situation because I am drowning in your sea of unhappiness." And so I did and found it was really quite painless. I took an early retirement and opened the door to new opportunities. I returned to the 'land of the living' and began living my life in the present again. The result: a renewal of joy and the restoration of purpose to my life.

Which brings me to second key principle of a joyful journey,

 

 

 

 



 

Often, the very thing we dread is the very thing that can open the door to new opportunities and put us back in the present.

 

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