When Jordan was a little boy, he used to play Super Mario Brothers on Nintendo (anyone else?!), and his favorite button on that rectangular remote wasn’t A, B, Up, or Down. It was the restart button on the game itself, because if he didn’t like his score on a given level, if he didn’t perform as well as he wanted to, if he made mistakes he shouldn’t have or felt like he could’ve avoided, if things didn’t go well (or perfect in his mind) he could just restart the game. Take a mulligan. Get a do-over. It all vanished into thin air. Like it never even happened. Poof!
The problem? We don’t get those in life, do we? There’s no such thing as that never happened. Life’s not a dry erase board. There’s no backspace or delete key. We can’t clear our history like a computer. What’s done is done and all that’s there is what’s left to do. What happened is old news. What will be done is what will make news.
So, instead of reeling with regrets all the time and living in a cloud of couldas, shouldas, wouldas, and didn’ts, we CAN choose to reframe our minds, reset our hearts, and turn our never wills into haven’t yet, because anyone who’s ever succeeded has failed. The difference between them and everyone else is that they’ve failed forward. They expected to fail. They needed to fail. We needed to fail. We needed to make mistakes. We’ve made more mistakes than we can count, and we know this journey is far from over, but we also know it’s those mistakes that have taught us the most. That have stretched us. Challenged us. And made us stronger.
But that doesn’t come easy, does it? The leaving regret behind part? Saying goodbye to the shoulda, coulda, wouldas. And it doesn’t always happen alone. Sometimes we all need our own Mickey to our Rocky, a loving kick in the pants. Someone in the corner to help us off the mat, bring us to ropes, remind us that what we’re fighting in the ring of life isn’t as big as our willingness to win, and then push us back into the center of the ring — and cheer us on to fight another round.
We hope we can be an encouragement for you today. You’re not in this alone. This fight that you’re fighting? It’s always worth another round.
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Photo by Annamarie Akins