Regret is Expensive, Just Ask Mr. Football

This week we have countless things to be thankful for and it is one of my favorite weeks because of our annual holiday party Friday evening. Many of you will be here; all are welcome!

If you, like us, ate too much last week, perhaps you are feeling regret as you wake up and your clothes are just a little tighter than the week before. Johnny Manziel, an incredibly gifted athlete, might feel a lot of regret.

Let's look at some of the financial costs of regret:
Recently, I was speaking to a professional athlete who feels regretful that he didn't save more money in his highest earning years. In fact, he feels ashamed that he doesn't have more today.

The lifestyle of the professional athlete is competitive. That competition extends off the field as well as on. I can only imagine the celebrations at the Bronco players' households after Sunday's incredible come-from-behind victory over the Patriots. And the parties continue in popular television shows like Ballers, whether guys can afford to or not. Athletes compete.

I told this young man he will still be here after he is no longer a player. He'll still be good, strong, and fast. He will still know what he's doing. But some young guys will be better, stronger, and faster, and he'll look like he doesn't know what he's doing any more. When he came into the league, he took food off the plate of another older player. He's now becoming that older player. He's going through a pre-retirement crisis.

The single-most-expensive mistake he's going to make is regret. If he looks back at his lifestyle today and feels regret for not saving a little more, then he'll never again have enough. Regret will eat up his hope for the future. But there is a magic formula--and it can be used by all of us, even if we're not living the big life.

Change your perspective and you trade poverty for wealth. Change the feeling of regret to remembrance. Instead of, "I should have" or "I could have" say "remember when" and laugh off the mistakes of the past.

Beginning today, this man can stop competing with the other players off the field and start becoming bigger, better, and who he is meant to be. He can, and is, tucking away more money and looking for meaning in life outside the field. It's fun to watch. It's a gift he is giving me, making these changes. It's the same thing all of us go through as we reach the end of one career and redefine who we are in retirement.

As for Johnny Manziel, he'd better change his ways or he'll be retired before his career even takes off.

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