Yes, we have infinite choices and infinite possibilities in life. Yes the world is our oyster. Yes, in this exact moment there are myriad versions of how my life could turn out based on what I decide to do in the next 30 seconds.
And yet, there is no such thing as a wrong decision. There is only the decision that you make. As soon as you choose, that’s your choice. The other choices you could have made but chose not too dissolve and their existence becomes immaterial. What lays before you now is a fertile, endless field of new choices and potentialities that is only possible because you just made the choice you made.
To those who are afraid of making a wrong turn, of choosing the wrong person, of missing something, of looking one direction and not seeing what was happening the other direction, listen up:
(My dear friend and very wise woman Sandra Chiu tells me this from time to time when I get lost in the tangled web of my mind. Thank you angel Sandra.)
Since you can only make one decision in any given moment and since the next choices in your life unravel only as a result of the decision you just made, how could you choose wrong? You can only choose what you choose.
And therefore, I do not believe in regret. Regret inherently means that I made one choice but that I should have chosen something else. It means that I chose wrong. But how could you possibly unravel every single moment from the present moment to the moment in which you felt you may have made the wrong choice and discard it with a quick flick of regret?
Here’s the thing: the web of our lives is far more intricate than we could possibly comprehend or even imagine. The choice you make today makes tomorrow possible. And tomorrow when you’re living in the richness of every moment full of more choices and possibilities, please, please, please don’t throw them out with the overly simplified idea that you could keep all the moments of today (which is yesterdays tomorrow) and still go back and make a different decision. It’s, in a word, silly.
So next time you’re faced with a decision, may you hear Sandra’s words whisper in your ear:
May you remember always that there’s no such thing as a wrong decision. There is only the decision you make. Make it with gusto. Make it with panache. Make it with the wonderment that must accompany something without which the rest of your life would cease to unfold.
And don’t worry. There’s no such thing as opportunity only knocking once. If you miss her the first time around she’ll come back later. What is for you cannot pass by you. Don’t worry, you can’t screw it up.
Throw regret out the window. Treasure today because without your brilliant choices yesterday, it wouldn’t even exist.