Taking action (or not…)

I’m quite enjoying answering to these WP prompts lately. It saves me the time of coming up with a subject. I mostly write to write. To practice the skill, and to train the muscle. I feel that it’s equally creative to come up with a story based on prompts as to a self-provided subject. And the good thing: if my blog sucks, it is – of course – the prompt that is to blame.

Write about a time when you didn’t take action but wish you had. What would you do differently?

Today’s prompt

There are several things that I regret, and potential times where I feel now that I should have intervened or taken action at the time. Some of these stories may be for another blog post, when the time is right. Or maybe for a book. Who knows. Some are painful for others, some painful for me. Today’s not the day for that.

However, I have plenty of regrets that I’m happy to share.

Business – One thing that I’m happy to share is my regret of never having executed on business ideas. I’ve had many business ideas and plans to start that in hindsight I believe would have been viable. However, the voice in my head tells me I suck, and that I will not succeed. I have abandoned most plans before execution. The one time we had a plan on paper, and millions of euros to fund it, I abandoned ship when things got hard. The funders kept their money. Interestingly, I do not regret that one. I would do the same thing all over again. I told my wife the other day that we should just start a business, even if we sell nothing. It’s this first hurdle that holds me back.

Friendships – A second thing I regret is the fact that I have lost friendships that were dear to me. In some cases, they just dissolved and it was fine. In others, I think my honesty may have intimidated people. Although I am who I am, I may have hurt people unintentionally. People have warned me about it at times. I sometimes wish I would have acted. I miss some of these people.

Skills – I’m currently in a job situation where I have a number of responsibilities that I take very serious. Because of them, I have a full program, which doesn’t leave a lot of room for additional skill training. I mean. I learn every day as I go. How to be a teacher, a supervisor, a scientist, a communicator. Many things. And I love this element of learning and hope to continue that life long. However, I sometimes wish I would have the time for developing more creative skills. In-depth courses on video editing, illustrating, or things like that I would probably find useful and enjoyable. I regret not having learned these things earlier (as now I only learned the basics on my own time, but they hardly count as a skill).

Writing – One life goal is to write a book one day (to be fair, my PhD dissertation has an ISBN, so it counts). A real book. I have this story for a novel in my head. It’s there, and it’s a beautiful story, based in part on real events, and parts fictional, to weave things together. It’s there, pretty much complete. All I need to do is write it up. I’m convinced it would make you cry. It’s touching, and I am certain of it. I’ve had this plan for years. Decades. There’s no real reason for not having written, or not having started. The reason is that my inner voice tells me I suck and would turn a beautiful story into an abomination. I shared some rough storyline with my wife for the first time, maybe 1.5 year ago. She also liked it a lot. I think she would tell me the truth, even if it sucked. Some day I will write it. I promise. If not, I will regret it all my life.

What else? Meh. This is enough for today.

Published by Robin Heinen

Father of two | Husband | Entomologist and Ecologist | Postdoctoral Researcher @ TUM | Traveler | Coffee Addict

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