This message is inspired by the book “The Top Five Regrets of the Dying” by Bronnie Ware. This book is especially important because it focuses on people who have lived their lives and are at their final days when they start to do some serious introspection and self-evaluation. What excites me about this study is the fact that these folks were willing to share their regrets. And by sharing their regrets, it is imperative that we use them as teachable moments to ensure that we don’t experience these same doubts.
Here are the five regrets.
1) I wish I had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
2) I wish I hadn’t work so hard.
3) I wish I had the courage to express my feelings.
4) I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
5) I wish I had let myself be happier.
Of these five regrets of the dying, one of them stood out to me more than the others and also happens to be the most common regret of all; “I wish I had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.” It truly takes courage to live a life that’s pleasing to God and not to your fellow man. I think it’s fair to say that when people realize that their life is almost over and look back on it that it’s much easier to see how many dreams went unfulfilled, how many friends you lost along the way and how in the end nothing really matters except for the people who love you and the people you love.
I made a commitment to myself that I will not be one of those people who chooses to live a life filled with regrets and unfulfilled promises. I made a commitment that I wouldn’t give the best years of my life to forwarding someone else’s mission and vision. I’d rather spend the rest of my life chasing my dreams then chasing someone else’s.
In the end, love is all that will matter. Don’t get caught up in the daily grind where you lose your real reason for living. Trophies will eventually tarnish, the ink on all of those degrees and certificates will eventually wear off and money runs out. All of that “stuff” really doesn’t matter. You won’t be spending your last days wishing you had worked more hours. In the end, you’ll be left with the ones you love and the ones who love you.
To The Top!
Motivational Thought Leader, Corporate Trainer & Keynote Speaker
Twitter : @JoePaulSpeaks
There is a person out there who is waiting to be loved and cared for by you. This person is starving for your attention and affection if only you could hear and understand their cry. Instead of showing this person the love they deserve to receive, you are too busy giving all of your love to someone else. The person who needs your love the most is you.
Learn to love yourself first before trying to love someone else. If you don’t understand the importance of this concept, you will continue to have that empty feeling inside. That feeling you feel when everything seems to be complete but it still feels like something is missing; that empty feeling comes from a lack of self-love. This happens when we are searching for the very thing that we must provide ourselves. Commit to memory the fact that while some may come very close, no one is capable of loving you like you can. If you are in a relationship, it is critically important that you express to your partner what it takes for you to feel loved. You can’t blame someone for an offense they had no clue they were committing.
A common mistake we make is to look outside of self to fill that “love” void; never realizing that if we invested half the time into ourselves as we do for others that empty feeling will be no more. Many of us expect for love to come from someone else other than ourselves which explains why so many people are constantly searching for the very thing they hold themselves. That search will never end if you don’t realize that you are the only person you can count on to love yourself unconditionally. When we love ourselves unconditionally, we set the standard and expectation of how we are supposed to be loved. When we unconditionally love ourselves first, only then will we be able to spread that love to others more fluidly and effortlessly.
Love Yourself First.
To The Top!
The book of Corinthians describes love as being patient and kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails.
We can truly learn all that is needed to be learned about love if we simply understand what love truly is. True love is the love you should give to yourself first. I do not believe that you can ever truly love a person if you don’t fully love yourself. How else will you know when it’s real? Unfortunately, I had to learn this valuable lesson the hard way.
I used to fall in love by the drop of a hat and quickly learned that heartbreaks don’t feel as good as they sound. I now better understand the true meaning of love; I have been able to adopt a new approach to love and falling in love. This new approach of “loving me first” was adopted shortly after a terrible break-up. I realized that I didn’t love her the way she needed to be loved simply because I was selfish. Selfish of the fact that all of my love was reserved only for her; I never really considered me in that equation. That’s why it didn’t work out. How can you truly love someone if you don’t understand what love is? Or who to give your love to?
I am reminded of the lyrics to a song that the late great songbird Whitney Houston sang ever so beautifully; “Learning to love yourself, is the greatest love of all”. This is truly a timeless message. Simply, if you want to experience the greatest love of all, start by loving yourself first.
You deserve it!
To The Top!
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