I’ll own up straightaway: the title’s not mine. I’ve borrowed it. The article (on the Huffington Post) was shared on my Facebook newsfeed during the week, and the title caught my attention.
Well it caught yours too, didn’t it?
The point of the article was that we have a voice in our heads that says “I’ll be happy when…”. You can fill in the blank yourself. For my Dad it would be “…when I have a Ferrari and a made-to-measure Paul Smith suit”. For some people it’s “…when I’m thin” or “…when I’m rich”.
This argument was then expanded on over eight steps. Most of which, I thought, slightly laboured the point, quite aside from being rather new-age for my liking (“Step 3: Look at the stars” being a case in point).
Still, I got the general idea. As I’ve written before, it’s not often we stop and realise how happy we are. You can find years disappearing before you, and then, bitter as a lemon, you shake your head and say “I used to be so… [young/ carefree/ spontaneous]”. At a quarter-century young, I find myself doing it already. Looking back on university photos: “wow- don’t I look YOUNG! Look at my skin! So clear and smooth!” Looking back on my finances: “wow- why didn’t I save more money?”
It’s not enough to just stop looking back and moaning. What about actually doing something to change what “Future Me” is going to think? Admittedly, we’re not all blessed with perfect foresight, so it can be slightly tricky working out what we’ll regret in the future. And I certainly don’t recommend getting too tied up with what the future you is going to think about what the current you did wrong in the past (which is not the past, but right now). See, it’s just too confusing.
The point that I’m trying to make is… Oh, how do I say this without sounding all new-age myself? Well, the point is, you’ve got to just live now. There’s no point waiting until you’re “thin” or “rich”. Just do it now. After all, what have you got to lose?
I used to go straight home after work and fall into bed, exhausted. Now my diary is bubbling over. I’ve got my yoga class on a Monday, and a ladies’ climbing session on Wednesdays. This Tuesday I met up with a friend I hadn’t seen for a while, and on Thursday saw my mentee for our monthly catch-up. I’ve also just spent a fortune getting my hands on one of the very last tickets for Othello at the National Theatre. I don’t think that Future Me will look back on this time and think “oh, if only I’d gone to bed a bit earlier instead of seeing my friend/mentee or doing yoga/climbing or going to the theatre. Yes, my main regret is having too much fun in life, and not sleeping more.” Well, I hope I won’t think that.
Now then, enough fun for one day (yawn), it’s time for some sleep! Thanks for reading – see you next Sunday.
P.S. For the original article, click here.