When I think about the most destructive feeling, I think self-doubt is the worst. What else can whisper in your ear: You're an idiot at the same time telling you You should have done..this, that, etc. Its the pits, I tell you.
I'm at an age where I am starting to really reflect back on my life, it's triumphs and it's mistakes, if only to develop some sort of guide for my growing kids. Soon, "I said so.... that's why" is just not going to cut it when my kids ask me why. I want my kids to grow up confident, fully aware that they will make mistakes, and it's OK. That it doesn't mean everything they do will be a potential mistake. I tend to think that about myself sometimes and am afraid I may be rubbing this off on my kids. Little things, little thoughts, like: Darn, I shoulda done this or that. Why am I such a dimwit. Why didn't we choose this or that?
It's kinda hard to edit what you say aloud all day long. But I'd really like to vow to curb the self-depreciating comments for the sake of my offspring. Someday, should they encounter a wondrous opportunity, I want them to embrace it, take it with open arms, not let fear stop them from giving it a whirl.
Every great inventor, artist, scientist, author, leader, entrepreneur surely had to endure more failures than successes. I am reminded of a story I read about a California 49'er who spent years digging for gold, only to give up and sell his claim to that spot. After a few minutes of digging, the new owner struck gold. If only that previous guy had gone a little further, had a little more faith in himself, he would have reaped the reward. Maybe it was self-doubt whispering in his ear: "You were an idiot for buying this spot...." and he had the great misfortune of believing it.
Make it a Great Day!