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A keystone is the center stone in an archway. It is the crux upon which everything else is built. In my view, these are the 6 most important keystones in your life in order to live a life with limited regrets. Side note: I originally was going to say a life of no regrets, and then I thought that a life with no regrets is nearly impossible. Many of us have choices or events that we feel sadness around. I believe that sadness is human. And I believe the more we can limit the regrets the happier we will be.
Honesty: Be Honest with yourself with other people. I believe there needs to be more loving honesty and less people pleasing in this world. In order to have a life with no regrets above all you need to be honest with yourself. Honest with what you want, need, and value. Honest with what you are willing to put up with, and how far you are willing to go before you hit the breaking point. Once you are honest with yourself you can then start being honest with others.
Vulnerability: Personally it took me a LONG time to understand that vulnerability is not as bad thing. I spent much of my life protecting myself and others from my needs. Pretending that I wasn’t vulnerable left me feeling alone and separate. Once I was able to embrace my vulnerability I was able to build stronger relationships with myself and others in my life. Through vulnerability we can build stronger connections with our loved ones, we can openly share our fears and desires and we can actively engage in our lives without quite as many filters.
Admit Mistakes: Mistakes, we all make them. There is a big difference between a mistake and a regret. While a mistake is something we do that is in error or just plain wrong a regret is something that we do that we feel sadness and pain over. So we can make a mistake and dwell on it to the point that we feel sadness and pain around it or we can make a mistake and learn from it and it doesn’t have to become a regret. When we admit our mistakes it allows us to embrace our humanity, take more risks and really show up for our lives.
Listen to Your Gut: I believe we all have a wise inner voice. This inner voice is quiet and unfortunately is easily blocked out by our louder more gregarious inner critic voices. This voice isn’t screaming at us, rather it is sending us a whisper like guidance. So in order to hear our inner voice we need to get quiet. Whether through silent meditation, taking a walk in the woods, or simply being fully present to ourselves throughout the day we can start to practice hearing our gut. When we listen to our gut, we are more connected to what we truly want in our lives. We are more authentic in how we go about our day.
Know what REALLY matters to you: When you know your values, and know what is most important in your life, you can then make decisions around going after what you want most in life. Living without regrets becomes a lot easier because you are clear on what is most important to you and those values become a guiding force in your life. Check out my Live Happier 101 Mini-Course for more information on figuring out your values.
Laugh: Being able to laugh at yourself and with others is an incredible gift. When we don’t take life SO seriously it become much less filled with regrets. We are all here doing the best we can with what we have and even at it’s worst there is always something worth laughing about. Laughter immediately brings us back to the present moment, it helps center us, and bring us into our true loving nature.
There you have it my 6 keystones for living a life with limited regrets.
I would love to hear from you: Anything you would add or change? Which of these do you struggle with the most? Do you think a life without regrets is possible?