What If The ‘What Ifs’ Are Important

One of the most common experiences in life are those in which we think about the choices we made and wonder what would have happened if we did things differently.

Whenever it has come up as a topic of discussion I have always heard the traditional response about the importance of living in the present and focusing upon the future.

The past is over with and since you can’t change it you need to deal with whatever situation(s) you are involve with now

Makes sense, it is reasonable and I know it is something I have said to my children or have had people say to me.

I get it and I understand why we speak that way but I don’t always buy into it.

What If The ‘What Ifs’ Are Important

My problem with the suggestion that is what is past is done is that sometimes it is not true.

Sometimes you can get another shot at a particular situation or opportunity and the suggestion that the past cannot be altered prevents some people from taking another swing at bat.

It is the challenge of overcoming human inertia and adjusting a black and white perspective to fit some of the shades of gray that we experience.

I am not suggesting that we jump in a time machine to go back and do things over but that we recognize that many of the limitations in life are self-made.

When you stop blindly accepting everything that happens and start asking what happens when I go after the “what if?”

I can accept that XYZ has come and gone but what happens if I push to get another turn at bat. What happens if I look at the feeling of the “what if” as motivation to find another opportunity or new way to do things.

Maybe the reason we have that feeling of “what if” is because we are supposed to push ourselves to go beyond the limits we have set.

“What if” we stop worrying about whether it is impossible and focus upon what is possible.

Sounds like some hokey new age crap doesn’t it?

Well, I don’t care, there is some real truth to it and it is part of why I have been pushing myself to get beyond the limits I have set.

Worst Case Scenario

The worst case scenario for me is simple. I focus on doing my best to make these things happen and know that when the lights go out I can take Emerson’s advice and rest comfortably.


I don’t know about you, but I can’t stomach failure because I let fear stop me from trying to take those what ifs and do something about it.

Better to try and fail than not try at all.

What do you think?

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