Jay-Z Wants You To Live With Regrets

Word to Jay (and Brené) — own, embrace, and fully step into living with those regrets

“This is the number one rule for your set

In order to survive, gotta learn to live with regrets” — Jay-Z, “Regrets”

If you’re just tuning in, welcome. My Medium column, “What Would Hov Do?,” resolves your random problems with my pen and some invaluable bars courtesy of Hovito.

This week, we’ve got a request from someone we’re going to call “Regrets.” And “Regrets” has an important question many of us sit with regardless of where we are on our journeys:

“How does one move on in life from their past mistakes & regrets?”

Brené Brown once said, “I’ve found regret to be one of the most powerful emotional reminders that change and growth are necessary.”

Right, I know — Hov and Brené in the same piece? But the insight rings true. Far too often, I’ve heard folx lean into the notion that they “live with no regrets” or “ don’t regret anything” they’ve done in the past. Some may see regrets as an impediment to growth or being stuck in the past, and something that is no longer under our control.

But Brené, and Hov’s bars from his debut album, the classic Reasonable Doubt, are giving us a lesson to hold onto: The past doesn’t have to be something we live in fear of or disregard. Living with what has been can be a great teacher for what’s already here, and what’s yet to appear on the horizon. Living with (some) regrets allows us to embrace the things that may have caused us to hurt or hurt others and right the course.

Our regrets can be just the push we need to look in the mirror, recognize and own the flaws, and use them as fuel to ensure we move through the world with deeper intention, a stronger sense of purpose, and a heart that’s open and ready to handle life’s pitfalls.

Let’s keep it a hunnid: We’ve all got skeletons and things we’ve done that we’re not proud of. Living with disappointment fortifies our resilience and can serve as a guide for the road ahead.

We get to weather the storms of today because of what we’re able to learn from the storms in our past.Word to Jay (and Brené) — own, embrace, and fully step into living with those regrets.

For the newbies out there, feel free to get familiar with some of my previous Medium work here. And here. Oh, and here, too.

he/him. @tedtalks giver. @EBONYmag / @medium writer. @frankwhiteco . creative. @taylorstrategy senior copywriter. @thecc_nyc 21’ class. @twloha board. #BRONX

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