"Dad, I'm writing a blog on how to live a fulfilling life and I'm struggling to put together my thoughts" Dad: "Why are you writing and for whom?" Me: "Have some readers. Some of them are interested in knowing my thoughts on this." <Mom overhearing this conversation> To dad: "See, I told you. Keep an eye on him (me). He wants to become Sadhguru. Does he plan to move to the Himalayas? Why are you wasting so much time looking for a house for him then?" Dad: "Hmm! He can't handle Bangalore weather. How will he survive the Himalayas! Well, to answer your question son, I can only tell you from my experience. I have lived my life fearlessly. We came from poverty. So whatever we gained was a positive. We made mistakes. Learnt from it. Corrected it. If not then trying to make peace with it."
A lot of you wrote back to me on my last blog! Some shared experiences of seeing your loved ones go through a life of regret. Many were interested in the video and asked for me to share it!
And some impatient ones asked me what my thoughts were about living a life of no regrets.
Well, I have only 35 years of living experience. So, I'm no Guru.
But from what I have gathered in the last 35 years, there are just two ways of living a fulfilling and a peaceful life:
1. Living your fears.
Fear has many forms - insecurity, failure, anger! This leads us to act in a way which feeds our EGO.
We don't act or take risks fearing failure.
We don't trust or we cheat due to insecurity.
We get angry because we can't think clearly and control our emotions.
The one thing we want to avoid is having a regret of something going wrong! So, we play safe or out of one or many of the above forms of fear.
Whether it is in our relationships or at work or while pursuing or rather lack of pursuing our passions.
Many a times we regret indecisions more than wrong decisions! So, remember it is not that we won't have conflicts or fights or disagreements. We will make these mistakes it is only human.
What we would regret mostly would be not sorting it out. Being indecisive about making good the bad.
"We should all start to live before we get too old. Fear is stupid. So are regrets." --Marilyn Monroe
Go do it anyway. If it turns out to be like what you didn't expect then correct the wrong. I'm not sure if there is any other way!
2. Make peace with what life has given you.
To explain this I share a quote from one of my favourite movies.
“Frodo: ‘I wish the ring had never come to me. I wish none of this had happened.’ Gandalf: ‘So do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.’” - The Lord Of The Rings: Fellowship Of The Ring
How do we make peace?
By accepting things the way they are rather than equating with what we wanted!
Life will give us many things - good and the bad. What we asked for and what we never asked for. What we like and what we don't like.
What is happening is what Is. That's the truth.
The farther we go from it, the less peaceful we would be.
If you accepted the good, accept the bad too. If you accepted what you asked for, accept what you didn't ask for. If you accepted what you liked then accept what you didn't like as well!
Let it go through you! Inner peace. Remember, Kungfu Panda?
In the end, I feel a life of no regret is more about doing what we feared
Live a life that's true to who you feel you are, not driven by what others expect.
Be incredibly Grateful for what life has given you.
Express your feelings - be vulnerable.
Don't be ashamed of yourself - be authentic.
Let go of EGO. You are not going to carry anything with you. So, why burden!
Write down what is most important to you. Revisit it. Keep doing it. The more you are away from it, the more regret you will have.
And finally, take a balcony view and find some humour.
“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Almost everything–all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure–these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.” - Steve Jobs
We can't get a perfect life.
The only way to make it fulfilling is to go through it fearlessly and accepting and making peace with what we have made of it!