Saturday, 26 July 2014

If I could do life all over again ..

I might have chosen to have this car if I could live again .. sadly it ain't mine!
I've been pondering recently about things that have happened in my life and whether I would do things differently if I had the chance to live my life again. Last night, I met up with a good friend I went to school with and we were discussing our school days. 

I hated school and was glad to leave after GCSE's finished. I was something of a loner and in a world of my own (as one of my teachers put on a report!), was picked on a fair bit but thankfully never seriously bullied. But actually, I would say that if I had to do it all again, I would have school the same way (well maybe punch one or two people but that's another matter ...) Why, you ask? 

The biggest advantage of being different at school, for me, was that it helped me to be less of a conformist and not to do things the same way as most people do - and to not really give much of a shit about it. Last year, I bought some pink trousers, which some guys might feel a bit uncomfortable with wearing - but it doesn't bother me. I think it's probably been a bit easier to walk my own path because of the fact that I've always felt a bit 'different'. 

To be honest, I never truly learnt social skills until I was in my thirties - and my experiences at school are part of the reason I've really wanted to find out more about myself and who I truly am. If I'd known at school what I know now, I would certainly have related to people differently - but I think I am more grateful for where I am now, considering I didn't have a good time at school. If I had not been a loner, I might not have the interest in personal development that I have today. 

There are things I would change if I could do it all over again though - however, I guess everything is part of the bigger picture. Certainly, the breakdowns I went through, I would not wish on my worst enemy times 10, they were hellish, particularly the second one, and if I'd had the choice, I would not have gone through that for anything. However, it is still possible to make good even out of the worst possible situations. One day, I hope to release a book about my life, God willing. What I learnt from it was that it is truly possible to get through situations that seem impossible - I once said that I'd never have a good day again, and I'm amazed how far I've come. 

And, even though I would still not consciously choose to go through what I did in 2006, it really was the catalyst for my life to really get going, and it probably had to happen if I was going to truly change my life for the better. I left church and Christianity, (eventually) found a spiritual path that was more suited to me, and moved location 275 miles north, the best thing I ever did. So I'm just glad I somehow managed to get through it all. 

I still love church buildings. This is Salisbury cathedral.
Christianity and church - yes I probably would do that all over again. I met some cool people along the way, and religion was a big help after I'd been through my hard times at school and other stuff in my teenage years. I learnt some good life principles, played the saxophone at church for a long while, it gave me a purpose .. eventually life brought me to a place where I realised I could no longer travel down this path, and it's been good to discover the spiritual path that is mine. 

My lack of success in the relationships and career department .. I guess the relationships one has been something of a heartache for me, and I would probably choose for things to be different if I could do it all over again, however, I have learnt a lot and hopefully might be able to help other people, particularly men, who have struggles in this area. Career .. most of this I wouldn't change, maybe the last two jobs which really were bad for me after the mental health issues I'd had in the past. But I think they happened partly to wake me up and to give me a message that I really did have to start doing things a bit differently.

The thing is, whatever your past experiences, or whether you would choose to go through them again or not, you cannot do anything about them. They have happened. To a certain extent you can control the meaning you give to them, and in some cases you can't - for example if your child is killed in a car crash, you are going to feel grief - and you certainly wouldn't choose to go through such a thing. But many good causes have been set up through tragedies, so even good things can result out of the very worst experiences. 

I think it's good though to run through the various things in your life and ask if you would do it all over again. If there are regrets and things you would do differently, ask what you can learn from them and how you can help others. And ask how hard times have made you stronger. 

If you could live life all over again, what would you change, if anything? 

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