Inspiration & Advice

Thank you Mr Hindsight

(Previously published on 16 February 2015)

It is often an interesting experience watching movies, especially action and thriller packed ones, with my sister and parents. While my sister is there analysing the characters and shouting at them for going left when they should probably be going right, my parents are there praying for the characters; “Oh in Jesus name he won’t fall into the bad man’s hands oo.” “Oh God help o.” Or better still some prayers of the tongue, when the action is just too much and they are pinching at the chair (well I do same sometimes too…). Lol! Between dad, mum and sister, to be honest, I’m not sure who is worse. But they all crack me up. And so I have to remind them – “GUYS… IT IS ONLY A MOVIE. No amount of shouting or praying will change what has already been scripted.” Lol! It always a laugh.

But hmm…! The beauty of a script.

You’ll find that while some movies are simply features of one’s imagination [thumbs up to the many screen writers – I am currently a big ‘Scandal’ and ‘How to get away with Murder’ fan by the way :); go Shonda Rhimes! ], many films are indeed a showcase of true life events – grass to grace stories and vice versa, survival tales, stories where people hoped for more out of life and pushed for it, did good, did bad, made mistakes they wished they hadn’t, fell in love like in a fairy tale, fought for freedom, or even defied the odds to become great. I guess the bottom line is fictional or not, in a movie, the end point is already predefined and agreed.

So as I look at life and compare it with a script, I tend to wonder how much easier life could be, if it was scripted; well to a certain extent. I mean… just imagine that we are able to know what is to come so we are prepared, or know exactly what we should be doing at each point of the day so we are productive, or know when we’ll die so we can make peace, put our house in order, get ready, and accomplish all we want to do in advance. How about a scripted life with options and consequences, where we could foresee the true impact of certain choices before we make them, and so as the saying goes, ‘make wise decisions’ . Well, you could say I have many wishes (or a hopeful imagination). Lol! But God knows there are times I have wished such a script exists. The reality however is -LIFE UNFOLDS DAY BY DAY.

So where am I going – Life is such that we plan with foresight, but only see the impact with hindsight. Of course there are some people with great foresight, while some others try. And there are also those who don’t plan at all, and go wherever the wind leads (I should add here by the way that while being spontaneous can sometimes be good, it could also be dangerous ). But truth is – none of us know what will happen next. We can only do our best and hope for the best. So don’t beat yourself up if it didn’t go the ‘best way’ you planned, and especially if you know in your heart that you tried your best. The truth is you could not have known. If you are also honest about not having tried your best, then you know what you have to do too. Sometimes also, things just happen as a learning experience; maybe costly, but still an experience.

So remember –

Hindsight teaches many things. Take the lessons and applaud the teacher. Likewise, don’t beat yourself up when things don’t go the way you hoped. I am sure you would have chosen better if you knew better at the time. Learn from the experience, make peace with yourself and whoever your poor choices at the time may have impacted, and then… move forward. You get another day to do better.


** I won’t beat myself over what I did not know, but will learn from what I have come to know mindset**

Have any experience or further tips on ‘Mr Hindsight’ and like to share? Why not do so in the comments box below.


© Dr Vivian O. Ikem, 2015


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Vivian (Dr Viv) is as vivacious and full of life as her name ‘Vivian’ suggests. She is a Certified Coach, People Builder, Consultant, Speaker and Trainer with a passion for helping ambitious Leaders and individuals build resilience, rediscover their value and potential and thrive in work and life. She is also a Chemical Engineer by background (with a PhD), multiple award winning researcher, ex-management consultant with a top UK based Consulting firm and Founder, The Reset Squad. Inspired by her journey as a high achieving professional and recovering perfectionist who overcame major trauma, depression and sudden change, Vivian taps into her invaluable lessons learnt, to empower and help people reset, rediscover and grow through their experiences. She is the author of Shadows in the Mirror - The Many Faces of Depression and contributing author in Unzenable – A Guide to Stress Less and Be More. To know more, please check out the 'About Vivian' page. Vivian is also available to speak on or discuss issues you may wish to take further personally, or at events. Please use the 'Contact' page to get in touch. Thank you.

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