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Do-Over

If you were given the opportunity for a “do-over” – that is, the chance to go back in time and make different decisions, different choices, and thereby change your life – would you accept it?

This is not an uncommon question – I’ve heard it discussed before, in person and in print, and at least one well-known movie was even based on the premise. And most of the people I run across, when confronted with this question, reply with an immediate and emphatic, “No.”

Me? I’m not so sure.

I have a bit of a tendency to wallow in regrets. In my less positive moments, this translates into a frustrated, “I wish I could go back and start all over again and do it right this time.”

So what would I do right, given the second chance?

  • I would take better care of myself.
  • I wouldn’t worry so much about what people thought of me.
  • I would travel more.
  • I wouldn’t be afraid to take chances.
  • I would manage my money better.
  • I would love myself more.
  • I would get a degree.
  • I would play the piano more.
  • I would waste less time.
  • I would listen to my heart first, and advice from others second.
  • I would write more.
  • I would share more.

Of course, the idea of a “do-over” is nothing more than a fantasy, something on which to dwell when I’m feeling sorry for myself or am swamped with mid-life regrets. And dwelling in regrets is a non-productive, vicious circle that I work hard to overcome, because I have learned that the more time I waste on regrets today, the more I’ll be wishing down the road that I could have had that time back.

The past is what it is. But today’s thoughts, today’s actions, today’s choices – those are what will form and mold my future, those I have the power to affect, those are what will determine what I see when I look back from the future.

“Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.”
~ Maria Robinson

That’s how I try to see it.

Written for GBE 2: Blog On
WEEK #39 (2-12-12 to 2-18-12): Do-Over

Laurel Regan, CZT – Certified Zentangle Teacher. Writer, reader, tangler, iPhoneographer, cat herder, learner of French and Italian, crocheter, needle felter, on-and-off politics junkie, 80s music trivia freak, ongoing work in progress.

{ 20 comments… add one }
  • margaret christine perkins
    Twitter:
    February 17, 2012

    I wallow, as well, and can pick more than a few things in your list. But then, again, I think to myself that one day, I’ll regret the time I spent dwelling on my regrets. It’s true that some of those things I’d like to do-over might have been what led me to the things I’d not trade for anything. Thought provoking! Thank you, Dawn
    margaret christine perkins recently posted… going back to new orleans: shrimp remouladeMy Profile

  • Gill Mojo February 18, 2012

    I love the quote; not one I’ve heard before. Thoughtful piece, well written.
    Gill Mojo recently posted… Playground Lessons – TWP promptMy Profile

  • jenn February 18, 2012

    I wish that I hadn’t stopped playing the piano, too. I love your post, thanks for your honest! PS-LOVE your blog layout!
    jenn recently posted… Kid Quotes Friday!My Profile

  • daphne February 18, 2012

    the things you want to do over.. like ‘not worry what others think’ ‘ love yourself more’ ‘not waste time’ all come with age….. you will find that worrying about others thoughts is less important than what you feel, therefore you will love yourself more, and waste less time..

    • Dawn
      Twitter:
      February 18, 2012

      I agree – the older I get, the more these things fall into place.

      Thank you for stopping by! 🙂
      Dawn recently posted… Do-OverMy Profile

  • Kat February 18, 2012

    I think the things you listed are things we would all change if given the chance but luckily they are also things that we can change starting today. Also, like Daphne said, many of them become less important as we get older. Great post.

  • Kat February 18, 2012

    Dawn, please stop by my blog and pick up the award I left for you. I love your blog.

    http://myviewthroughkateyes.blogspot.com/2012/02/thank-you-sweetie.html
    Kat recently posted… Thank You Sweetie!My Profile

  • Beth February 19, 2012

    I’ve never cared much about what other people think of me, and that’s been a wonderful gift, I think. Like me, love me, hate me, I’m cool with any of those.
    Beth recently posted… Done-Diddily-DoneMy Profile

    • Dawn
      Twitter:
      February 19, 2012

      That really is a gift! …because no matter what you do, there will always be SOMEONE who isn’t happy about it, or who would have done it differently. Just being yourself is the best way to be, by far.

      Thank you for stopping by! 🙂
      Dawn recently posted… You like me, you really like me!My Profile

  • Kathy February 19, 2012

    Your list really made me think and come up with something I would do over that I hadn’t thought of before. A long time ago I used to work out three times a week. Then I stopped. If I had it to do all over again, I would have continued to work out and never quit. That way, when I had babies, I would have been able to kiss the weight goodbye. I would still be in shape and the prospect of losing weight wouldn’t be so daunting.

    Kathy
    http://gigglingtruckerswife.blogspot.com/
    Kathy recently posted… The Irresistibly Sweet Blog AwardMy Profile

    • Dawn
      Twitter:
      February 19, 2012

      Believe me, I totally get what you’re saying! I have a whole lifetime of regrets about the way I’ve not taken proper care of myself, especially to do with my weight. But I keep plugging away at that, one step at a time, so that hopefully in the future I won’t regret today’s choices.

      Thank you for stopping by! 🙂
      Dawn recently posted… You like me, you really like me!My Profile

  • Kenya G. Johnson February 19, 2012

    Your post made me write another one. Not GBC related. I linked up with Stream of Consciousness Sunday. Great post. I love it when someone’s writing inspires me to write. I would love if you would sign my quotes guestbook with the one you put here “Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.”
    ~ Maria Robinson http://www.kenyagjohnson.com/quotes
    Kenya G. Johnson recently posted… SOC Sunday: Piano lectures…My Profile

  • Classic NYer February 21, 2012

    Sometimes I think I want a do over, and then I realize I don’t really need one. A former friend of mine quit his job and his pursuit of a doctorate degree at age 59 to become a full time street musician. I’m a lot younger than he is. If he has time to finally pursue his dream, then so do I.
    Classic NYer recently posted… On auditionsMy Profile

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