A map lies open on a car dashboard, and through the windshield a road fades out into sunlight

Hey Jude: Stop Having Missed Opportunities

At what point in our lives do we start to take control of what we want? When do we stop having missed opportunities? The answer to both those questions is simple: It’s whenever you decide.

Think about it. What are the most common regrets people have? Usually the missed opportunities they had in life. Personally, I have had more than a handful of missed opportunities, some more major than others, even missed relationships. Now, I am one of those people who believes everything happens, or doesn’t happen, for a reason. I know you are probably thinking how annoying those people are. I don’t disagree, but just because I do believe that statement does not mean that I am not still saddened or bothered by my missed opportunities. For some of the things I missed, the only person to blame for that is myself, because I did not take charge and speak up about what was ahead of me or what I wanted and now I have to live with that regret.

The good news is that I can choose not to live with it forever. Sure, the regrets I have are both big ones and small ones, but it is fun to add the experiences I missed out on to my list of future plans. Now that I’m older I will have to adjust these plans a little bit, but I am happy they have appeared back on my map.

A lot of what holds us back, and causes us to have so many regrets is a not-so-fun, four-letter F word: FEAR. We are so afraid of the outcome of doing something that we only ever see the negative side, and do not allow ourselves to see the possible positive outcomes. This can apply to relationships or just something as simple as applying to college, or following a dream you once had.

I recently got see the positive side of what happens when you don’t let the fear control you and put something off just because you fear failure. A special person close to me just achieved a dream that he’s had for as long as I have known him. I got to see how it was stressful, and seemed it would never come to light, but that first day of his dream becoming a reality was simply magical. Being able to be a part, and see how hard work, and perseverance, and most importantly strength in yourself, pays off was really an eye opener for other aspects of my life.  

I could really relate to doing something scary; for me it was starting Hey Jude, and writing to help others. Sharing my stories, my experiences, and my pain with others, is a terrifying experience every month for me. At the same time, if my advice can help just one person, then I am beyond thankful and believe it is worth fighting the fear of sharing. I started writing as a lone person, but soon I was asked to be a part of the Protagonist team, and I will never forget that day. It meant the world to me that something I never really thought would grow, could!

In high school I had an amazing choir teacher who always told us that we should audition for everything. You can get 99 no’s, but all it takes is that one yes to make all the difference. Now it’s time to put your fear on the back burner and dive in! You might really surprise yourself. As for the relationship side of things, the hopeless romantic in me always encourages the same. If you care about someone you should tell them. Even if they do not reciprocate your feelings, it will make you feel better. Knowing is always going to be better than all the “what if” questions. And on the flip side, everyone in the world deserves to be told someone cares about them. It is always a nice feeling! Besides, you never know when they may need that someday and hearing it can make all the difference.

At the end of the day we all have our little regrets, and the only person we can blame is ourselves. Our fear of the negative outcome, or failing, is the lock on our cages. Set yourselves free, and think to yourself: Even if I fail, even if it doesn’t turn out how I wanted, at least I did it, and I can try again!

Posted by Jude

I am your Empathetic Oracle, what makes me qualified for such a title? Allow me to explain. Wasn’t until a few years ago that I decide to use all of my personal experiences to help others. I have always been a very empathetic person and that is partially because of everything that I have been through in life. I have fought through depression, suicidal tendencies and thoughts. High stress situations, and what has felt like unimaginable heartbreak. I have a very colorful background and instead of dwelling on my past and letting it control me, I have learned from it and want to share what I have learned with others who may be feeling the same way, or going through these similar situations and just want help. A big part of what I offer is privacy. I know how hard it can be to open up to a stranger so think of me as your diary that writes back. Simple put I am here to listen, and offer my guidance, opinion, or suggestion. There is absolutely no judgement on anything you have done, or are thinking. We are human beings and subject to constant mistakes and that is okay.

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