Some books educate, while other entertain. Once in a while a book reaches out and touches your heart and even soul. Bronnie Ware was a palliative nurse who recorded the most common regrets of the dying. She turned these recordings into a book called, “The Top Five Regrets of the Dying”.
Regret is a powerful emotion. It can linger on our minds and make us suffer. Often, it comes from mistakes of the past that we have yet to learn from and move on.
What this book reminded me of is that the past can be used instead as a reference point to understand what adjustments we should take moving forward. It is a choice to do things differently.
Sadly, regret often comes too late. When the damage has already been done.
What Bronnie began to notice was a common theme among the regrets of the dying. She narrowed it down to 5 of the most common. You might find yourself relating to one or more than one regret. If you do, then you can choose. Choose today to take the steps necessary to turn your regret into actions. Actions that will lead you down a different path.
Turn your regrets into new habits and joy.
Here are the Top Five Regrets of the Dying
I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
This was the most common regret of the dying. It speaks to unfulfilled dreams and sacrifices.
I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.
There is a popular philosophy going around right now about the importance of Hustle. Work hard, sleep little. The problem is that people often find out too late what is really important to them.
One common regret of the dying was from those who felt they spent so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence. They realized too late that they missed their children’s youth or partner’s companionship.
I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
Suppressed feelings breed resentment. You hold it in not to cause problems, only to create bigger problems down the road.
I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
Another regret is from friendships lost. Life gets busy but don’t let your friends pay the price. Golden friendships are precious and should be treated as such.
I wish that I had let myself be happier.
Many did not realize until the end that happiness is a choice. They stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. Your anger or sadness can be part of what you know and become your comfort zone.
Instill an attitude of gratitude and work on finding your happiness.
“The 5 Regrets of the Dying”, Bronnie Ware
What regrets have you been having recently? Use your past as your base for learning what is truly important in your life and what behaviors and habits need to be modified.