Do I Have Regrets?

This week, I spoke at Ladies Who Launch NYC. It was a wonderful venue with some amazing women like Martha Beck, Elizabeth Lesser and Joan Lunden, each spoke and were quite brilliant.

I stood among these greats and then I got up to humbly share my story.

I shared about how I became homeless and orphaned at sixteen. How all the doors to what I had known in the past

were suddenly closed to me forever. But today I stood before them as a successful woman, and as a celebrated success coach.

My time on stage was very intimate. I really allowed the 300 women in the audience to deeply know me. I shared openly and from my heart.

After I spoke, we had a scheduled break, and I was extremely moved and inspired as women lined up to share their own stories with me.

One woman approached me and asked me, “Lolly, you don’t sound upset about your past. Do you not have any regrets? Are you not angry at your parents? I would be furious!” she declared loudly.

I gently put my arm around her and I knew that my new friend’s questions had little to do with me, but much more to do with her own experiences.

Because my truth is I have accepted what has happened to me.

I not only accepted but I have taken responsibility for my choices and I have learned to have compassion towards myself.

Blaming others, being angry, and holding onto to the past would keep me stuck. And that was a price I wasn’t willing to pay.

I shared with her that my current reality was a reflection of the lessons I needed to learn in order to be the person I was meant to be.

It is through these experiences, of choosing, and taking responsibility. I learned how to engage in excellence in my life.

Do I have regrets about my past?

“No! The past only has power over us when we repeat its story in our day to day life. I have chosen and accepted my past.” I said.

I leaned in and whispered to her, I hope you choose to own your past and build upon it and move forward and regain ownership of  a life that you can be proud of!

Lead From Within: Accept everything about yourself – I mean everything, You are you and that is the beginning and the end – no apologies, no regrets.

I want to hear from you: Do you have any regrets in your life?

Lolly Daskal is one of the most sought-after executive leadership coaches in the world. Her extensive cross-cultural expertise spans 14 countries, six languages and hundreds of companies. As founder and CEO of Lead From Within, her proprietary leadership program is engineered to be a catalyst for leaders who want to enhance performance and make a meaningful difference in their companies, their lives, and the world.

Of Lolly’s many awards and accolades, Lolly was designated a Top-50 Leadership and Management Expert by Inc. magazine. Huffington Post honored Lolly with the title of The Most Inspiring Woman in the World. Her writing has appeared in HBR,, Fast Company (Ask The Expert), Huffington Post, and Psychology Today, and others. Her newest book, The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness has become a national bestseller.

  1. Karen Todd

    14. Nov, 2010

    I’m a big admirer of your work, and after reading this, I’m a huge admirer of you as a human being. I follow your blog, and your tweets – your words are always thought-provoking, inspiring and spookily timed in relation to where I am in my life. I have experienced huge heartache in the past, and I’m always saying how much I want to move on – in the next breath though, I’ll be happy to re-tell my story to anyone who’ll listen. I think it’s time I started telling a different story – the one of the life I want, and am meant, to live. Thank you.

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  2. john serpa

    14. Nov, 2010

    Touching blog, brings back a vivid memory for me. It was March, 1999, I’m in a small restaurant and seated across from the person that had hurt me the most in my childhood. When I was young I viewed her as a monster, now, I had to face her for reconciliation. It took every ounce of energy to confront the person I once feared with every fiber.

    I had to do this because I had to be free of the bondage the memories tied around my soul. After the most difficult part of the conversation ended, (confronting an abuser is never an easy conversation) she began to cry. In that dreary parking lot I embraced her and told she was forgiven. With that, the countles memories of pain and agony I endured as a foster child and later an adoptee went into the wind.

    Lolly is right, rear view mirrors have limited purpose, they do not point us to our “true north”. I applaud people like Lolly because when I read her words, I see my own reflection. That does not imply there are not bad days at times, there are.

    I was recently in an airport watching a mom hug her teenage son as he was departing, I heard her say “I love you so much, you are such a great son.” I could not shake the tears, because inside I was reminded I had never heard those words from a mom, yet after that brief relapse I gained my composure and braced myself knowing that I had a new family and while scars remain, we cannot become mired in the past—a new day is a new slate—and the question that Lolly is posing is, what will you write on yours today?

    Lolly, —kudos on a wonderful bog.

    Yours sincerely,

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  3. Lolly Daskal

    15. Nov, 2010


    Thank you for your thoughtful comment and great insight. I believe, that our world is a wise place, and our lives unfold according to a series of natural laws that are nothing less than brilliant.

    We human beings think that our lives are governed by random events and that the people who enter and that the people who exist do so purely by chance. Nothing could be further from the truth.

    Everyone who enters our lives comes to us at the precisely the time that we most need to learn the lesson that they have come to teach us.

    There is no chaos, only order, there are no coincidences-ever our lives are not run by good or bad luck, but by an intelligent design to help us evolve into our best selves.

    Our abusers, our weaknesses, our failures, our false assumptions are all part of OUR story. They are there for a reason.

    By visiting our past, our historical patterns, our abusers,
    our false assumptions we can set out to understand them,
    and by understanding them it teaches us to react differently.

    We can NOT forget them but we can forgive them.
    We can NOT forget ourselves but we can to forgive ourselves.

    By doing so, we can become this wonderful force of nature,
    we can we move from a place of struggle, regret, longing, yearning, blame, shame, into one of ease, flow and love.

    We are not the victims.
    We are here for a reason.
    We are here to learn our lessons
    and to be the person we are meant to be.

    We can at anytime draw into your heart that to which we dream and desire. We can live our life with strength and determination and we can live our lives in love, peace and magic.

    The choice is ours.
    Choose well.


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  4. Lolly Daskal

    15. Nov, 2010

    Dear Karen,

    I understand you have pain.
    I understand you have ache,
    I understand you have hurt—trust those feelings.

    Those feelings that most of us want to
    run away from will give us the greatest answers to life.

    Our feelings grant us immense wisdom
    and carry the knowledge of our subconscious mind.
    and our subconscious mind are our link to the wisdom of where we exist.

    Our feelings are an essential part of us being human.

    Deny the feelings and you begin to shut down parts of yourself.

    If you keep doing that and you will lose the connection to who you truly are.
    You w ll begin living completely in your head and you will stop feeling.

    Tell your story.
    Feel your feelings.—-but react different to the story.
    Tell the story with love, wisdom and understanding
    Tell the story with love and compassion towards yourself

    The starting point of enlightenment and awareness and having a better life, is a goal that every person should strive for, its inner leadership.

    Leadership is all about self discovery and creating value in the world.

    Create value in your world Kate!

    See the magic within yourself.

    Learn from the past

    Tell your story

    And share your gifts with others.

    This pathway …leads US to a best life.
    Wishing you the best on your path.


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  5. Guy Farmer

    17. Nov, 2010

    Beautifully said Lolly. It’s wonderful to see someone sharing from the heart. I love working and living from those deeper parts of me where I connect with who I really am. It allows me to create a life of joy and fulfillment. It seems like the more I follow my dreams the happier I am and the less any so-called setbacks seem to matter. It’s all part of a wonderful journey.

    Reply to this comment
    • Lolly Daskal

      17. Nov, 2010

      Guy, you speak such truths, when we connect from within, we lead forward in such a beautiful and powerful way. Thanks for your very thoughtful comment.

      Reply to this comment

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