Regret. It’s a word that does resonate with me.
I’m an ideas man and my head is popping or pooping out new ideas every minute of the day, even in my broken sleep.
I try to live my life with a focus on positive opportunities rather than looking back with regret, but the main cause of regret in my life is the ideas I’ve had and haven’t realised.
When I have a good idea I really feel it with my whole body. I am addicted to this feeling - I liken it to an orgasm. An idea orgasm. It’s such a great feeling that I’ve spent most of my life in search of the ideas that bring it about.
These ideas in my head, I carry them with me and they’re as fresh as the day I had them. It doesn’t matter if they were a week ago, or three years ago, or ten years ago. They drive me crazy.
It’s the bringing to life of ideas that’s the hard part. But it’s not impossible.
Three years ago I decided I needed to change my life. I decided to change the way I run my business, to work on the business and not in the business. And I decided I needed to bring to life the backlog of ideas I have in my head that won’t go away. I want to start taking the ideas I’ve accumulated and actioning them. To get them out of my head. This is exciting, because it will make room for new ideas. New projects. New possibilities.
I’m working on a new eco resort outside of Sydney and a restaurant chain with my son Luca. This is one of the ideas.
Usually, I have an idea and I get excited about it. I live and feel it, I start designing it, and then I get to the difficult point of bringing it to life. One of the differences with client projects is they come with parameters. It’s an easier task.
For a client, I’m bound to thinking about a project in terms of a one particular street, for example. But for my own projects, I’m thinking of the street, of Sydney, of Australia, and the world. It’s endless. Unless you plan a creative self-imposed set of parameters and deadline it could go on forever.
But the fundamental difference with a client is they have a team to implement the idea you deliver to solve their problem. They have the infrastructure, or the support, to make the idea come to life. A property developer, for example, has the infrastructure to find a site, and build a building. For this personal project, I have to think about how I can fund it, how to find a site and who is going to build it. All of these questions are fine to have, but it becomes a huge bucket of challenges to resolve that I don’t usually have to think about.
I’m lucky my son is young and enthusiastic; he’s keeping me honest and keeping me on top of it. He’s pumped and excited about this project and it’s that energy that is protecting me from potential regret.
The work I did on my business with a coach three years ago, and am still doing, was a real turning point for me. I realised I had to redesign myself in order to redesign my business. That’s when I wrote my book, Design Your Life.
The realisation that idea orgasms are about instinct, and trusting instinct, was a major game changer and positive move for me. It gave me more confidence every day to trust my instincts.
Of course, it hasn’t been easy. But with each new project I’ve proven that trusting my gut and using strategic planning has worked. This is incredibly rewarding and when done carefully leaves me with zero regret, but instead a feeling of elevated lightness and a sense of achievement.
I like the idea of being ‘re-grateful’, instead of regretful. The idea of regret driving us to do positive things.
I don’t want to live my life with regret being a priority. I want to erase the should have, would have, or could have from life. I’m making room for more idea orgasms, and damn it feels good.