“One of the greatest mental freedoms is truly not caring what anyone else thinks of you” ~ Anonymous (tweet this)
These days, I try to live my life by one simple rule – never be ashamed of what has made you the person you are.
I’ve got to be honest – it’s a toughie, and I struggle with it. I struggle to be proud of anything I have achieved, and shame and regret come easily to me. I often find myself wishing that I could go back in time and change many things about my life.
And yet, here I am – in a pretty good place. My professional life is chugging along nicely, and I love this blog and every single awesome reader who takes the time out of their day to read my ramblings. My personal life is good, and I have for the time being achieved a good balance and diversity in work and play.
Who’s to say where I would be in life if I could go back and change my course? It is easy to regret, but perhaps the darkest moments in your life have ultimately contributed to your strength and character.
There is a better way to look at regret – it changes nothing. Looking back at what you would have done differently achieves nothing – it is what you do in the present that makes all the difference in the world.
So please – don’t be afraid to acknowledge and embrace every part of your history and character. Strive to make yourself a better person, but never be ashamed of who you are.
If you have non-mainstream views on life, don’t be afraid to voice them. Sure – don’t shove your beliefs down people’s throats (no one should do that), but don’t hide them either.
And as for the people who judge? They’re not worth your time.
The Key to Being More
Everything that we experience as human beings is relative to our own perception. One person’s challenge is another person’s cakewalk. One person’s accomplishment is another person’s baseline. And one person’s hardship is another person’s bliss.
There are no prizes for having experienced terrible things in life. The most you can hope to receive is sympathy for your plight. It is ultimately up to you to make the most of the cards you are dealt in life.
If your internal monologue is an endless “why me” on repeat, you are doing nothing more than feeding your own sense of self-pity. And since each and every one of us only has 24 hours per day on our very limited time on earth, you owe it to yourself to do something more productive with your time.
Here’s what it comes down to – your achievements in life are largely dependent upon attitude and application, not circumstance. Ultimately, your success is defined by how you react to the greatest adversities that you face, not how those adversities govern you. The sooner you realize that, the sooner you will understand that you are far more in control of your destiny than you ever thought possible.
Since I have gained a few new readers since this blog re-launched last week, and with the above message in mind, I thought that this would be a good time to tell you a lot more about myself.
Some of the things that I am about to tell you are the kind of things that I wouldn’t actually tell some of my closest friends. Some of them may well read this post, in which case they’ll now. But hell, life’s too short, right?
Here we go.
38 Things I’ve Never Told You
I’m 26 years old, 6’1″, and about 200lbs. My birthday is September 5th.
I was a fat kid, then I shot up about 6″ when I was 16.
I suffered from depression in my childhood – my teenage years were miserable.
I love inappropriate and immature humor in many different forms.
I’m the lead singer/guitarist in a band.
Last year I grew a horseshoe mustache.
I love movies. I probably go to the cinema once per week on average.
I have a heart condition that means I cannot drink alcohol or caffeine. When I tell people I don’t drink, they often assume I am a recovering alcoholic.
I love the USA, and have been there more times than I can count. I may well live there one day.
I have an older brother. I used to work with him in the family business.
I went on the world’s biggest skycoaster, twice (both times with my sister) – a decade apart.
I don’t really talk to anyone about personal things.
I have an older sister who lives in Houston, Texas. She has three kids. I miss them all a lot.
I have been single most of my life.
I often feel extremely awkward in emotional situations.
I played an ugly sister in a school play. After the first performance, I got told off for playing with my fake breasts too much.
I am extremely competitive.
I can be arrogant.
I am a perfectionist.
I once performed Ricky Martin’s “Livin’ la Vida Loca” in front of a sizable crowd on a cruise ship talent show:
I have an hereditary skin condition called vitiligo.
I love sports – cricket, golf, squash, American Football, football (soccer), and more.
I love music festivals. Not nearly as much fun when you’re sober though.
I only buy new clothes when absolutely necessary.
I am terrible at keeping in touch with my friends.
I am very independent.
I am very private, and not prone to revealing much about myself (this being the exception that proves the rule).
I love dancing like an idiot at weddings and in nightclubs, and have won my share of impromptu dance-offs.
Every time I watch a movie with a buff lead male role, I decide to start working out. It never happens.
I have a potty mouth.
I have always instinctively assumed that I will achieve remarkable things. Whether I will or not remains to be seen.
Last year, I followed the Primal Blueprint for 2 months.
For all of 6 months or so, I was an avid runner. I dropped 28lbs and ran a half marathon in 1h48m (and 13 seconds).
I suffer from insomnia and restless leg syndrome.
I am an atheist, but try to be open minded to anything that is not scientifically disprovable.
A couple of years ago, I told my best friend (female) that I was in love with her. We haven’t spoken since.
From the bottom of my heart, thank you for taking the time to read this. I hope it resonated with you and perhaps even made you think about how you might work towards a better life for yourself.
I think that writing out a list like the above is a progressive and rewarding thing to do. You should try it – even if no one reads it. I’d love to read your thoughts in the comments section too.