Posted by Tommy Runfola | May 3, 2016
I am bringing up this topic today because I’ve recently had the opportunity to “look back” over my life and accomplishments, while finishing writing my NEW book, The Way of the Rich. This has been a dream of mine for years – to be able to take all of the lessons I learned from my own journey and experience with mentors, and to be able to put it all together into a book that I wished I’d had when I was first starting out and trying to find my way to success in life. (But more about my book later…)
During this final editing phase for my book, I have read and re-read what is essentially the culmination of all of my life’s lessons. When I was first penning the chapters, I struggled with what stories to include. Would others really find them helpful? Was there really a strong enough point in what I was trying to say? The hardest part of all of it was actually believing that somewhere out there someone would be able to BENEFIT from me exposing some life experiences that had been very unnerving and tumultuous during the process!
Then, during this final editing phase, re-reading my own book and life lessons for what felt like the 1,000th time, something strange started to happen inside of me. It was almost as though I was able to “forgive” myself for what I had been judging for so many years as “mistakes” or missteps in my life, holding it against myself that I should have / could have done something differently.
Then it occurred to me just how much we can make ourselves absolutely miserable with regret. All throughout our lives we’ve experienced moments of worry, fear, anger and irritability, only to find out later that our worries, fears and anxieties were either totally unnecessary, overblown, or were over little or nothing at all.
But life IS FILLED with lessons. And the purpose is to LEARN THEM. Just like an athlete always training to be bigger, stronger, faster; the public never sees the hours of work, of practice. They never see how many times he / she falls down in training. They never see the blood, sweat, tears. They never see the moments where the individual wants to cry or contemplates really giving up. They only see the sum total results of all that work.
Instead of regret, what if we looked at our lives and experiences as the lessons that they are, and had gratitude for how far we’ve come to get HERE, instead of always saying to ourselves that we “could have / should have” gotten farther. The truth is THIS is where you are right now, and it’s further along than you were yesterday. To make the most out of our lives, we need to look back and gain perspective on what has meant the most to us so far! And then build on THOSE MOMENTS!
I’m not where I want to be, but I’m sure closer than I was a month ago. And with this new perspective of GRATITUDE in looking back at my biggest life lessons, I have a new-found motivation and attitude as I continue pushing on to turn more dreams into reality in this next phase!