Professional & Personal Coach
Do yourself a MEGA favour and avoid having them.
Having regrets is a drain on our energy and our vitality. There is only one-way paying attention to regrets goes – and it’s not upwards.
The deeper I’ve got into my practice, the more I learn about the weight many carry on their shoulders as a result of their regrets.
- If only i had…..
- Regret not doing….
- Wish i had…. or could
- Should do…or have done…
When you carry regrets – you feel a range of emotions and experience a serious lack of joy.
Truth is that we can all feel Frustrated, Disappointed with ourselves, Embarrassed, Shame, Sad about the decisions we have made in our lives.
I have experienced people who have become angry, bitter and darn right unpleasant to be around because they hold onto their regrets.
Stuck in rut with a whole lot of their pain.
Another spoiler alert. Worth remembering we ALL
- make mistakes.
- are perfectly imperfect.
- can get back up again.
- can become masters of practice to become resilient.
Your Choices. Your Horizons.
The magic happens when we discover that all of us are the Captain of our own ships.
It’s your choices that create your horizon. Your map. Your compass.
Firstly, we all make a zillion decisions every day. Some move us forward, Some hold us back and some fuel our regret tank…
Secondly, hindsight is a teacher …
Yet, unless we deal with the thoughts that come up as we reflect, it’s all too easy to spiral into a ‘Regret Ether’.
I am reminded of these beautifully crafted words from palliative care nurse Bronni Ware as she recorded the Top 5 most common Regrets of the Dying.
There are no references to that bigger house, better holidays, that bungee jump or having more sex!
Bronni’s book had a profound effect on the direction of my life & resonated to connect me to live life on purpose.
It was at a time when both my parents had died & a place of reflection as a new chapter opened. I was deciding what I would do if I could do anything – the seeds of Tides of Change were sewn.
5 Most Common Regrets of the Dying
Here are Bronnis summary in her words.
1) “I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.’
‘The most common regret of all. When people realize that their life is almost over and look back on it, it’s easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled.
Most people had not honoured even half of their dreams and die knowing that it was the choices they had made, or not made.
Health gives us freedom. Often only acknowledged when they no longer have it.’
2) “I wish I hadn’t worked so hard”
‘This came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their children’s youth and their partner’s companionship.
Women also spoke of this regret, but as most were from an older generation, many of the female patients had not been breadwinners.
All of the men I nursed deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence.’
3) “I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings”
‘Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with others.
As a result, they settled for a mediocre existence and never became who they were truly capable of becoming.
Many developed illnesses relating to the bitterness and resentment they carried as a result.’
4) “I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends”
‘Often they would not truly realize the full benefits of old friends until their dying weeks and it was not always possible to track them down.
Many had become so caught up in their own lives that they had let golden friendships slip by over the years.
There were many deep regrets about not giving friendships the time and effort that they deserved.
Everyone misses their friends when they are dying.’
5) “I wish I had let myself be happier”
‘This is a surprisingly common one.
Many did not realize until the end that happiness is a choice.
They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits.
The so-called ‘comfort’ of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their physical lives.
Fear of change had them pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content, when deep within, they longed to laugh properly and have silliness in their life again.’
SOURCE: The Top Five Regrets of the Dying: A Life Transformed by the Dearly Departing – Bronni Ware
A representation of the duality of strength and vulnerability that exists as part of being human.
If you haven’t read it yet – it’s well worth a few hours of self-care to nourish your Inspiration.
Perhaps a gift to yourself as to how we might learn from their wisdom?
Regrets represent Struggle
Most humans have yet to embrace the reality that a fulfilled, and purposeful everyday is a choice that we all have the power to access.
Staying in patterns and habits that don’t serve our future may feel safer than creating change.
Yet, the truth is that it will only limit you and keep you stuck – exactly where you are now.
No Regrets became a Driver of Change
A decade ago I became aware that my husband was amidst & masked a deep-rooted struggle.
Married for 12 years with 2 sons – I knew there was something buried. He was not wholly where he wanted to be – by location.
I am so grateful that I had the resources to access what was his truth & reality.
At the time we were amidst a perfectly imperfect life – busy, fun, real & raw – amidst our juggles of a young family & careers, we had created our version of 3 basic human needs Love, Safety and Belonging.
For him, there was something missing.
We have a wonderfully close family, incredible friends, our health, a beautiful home, holidays & adventures a mission to create memories, established careers – he felt displaced and was yearning to spend some time back at ‘home’.
He had left NZ & visited the UK with a backpack on an adventure for a 2 yr adventure?! – 18 years later we took the leap of faith to meet his deepest desire and embrace an adventure.
Decision Driver was choosing No Regrets
Gotta tell you…. coupled with the adventure & excitement of the unknown – it was the hardest & toughest challenge. Yes, I miss so much – yet have grown beyond measure.
We navigated many a storm – individually and together… and now with added layers – we now surf our ‘Covid Globe’.
It’s a current opportunity to have a base in both Hemispheres. We don’t have it all worked out & right now look forward to travel being possible again.
It was a massive tick on the yip – done that – no regrets.
There is wisdom amidst the experience which has become a resource to access for you when & if it’s relevant.
Intuitively the right questions come up for you to access what you need.
I hear you.
5 tips to avoid having Regrets?
- Accept that we all make mistakes.
- Remember that the only perfect people are in the cemetery.
- Focus on gratitude. Write about things each day that you value and appreciate.
- Embrace & celebrate your personal strengths.
- Practice Self Compassion. Forgive yourself for your c*ck ups & forgive others –
Life is too short to have and live with regret.
Be who you want to be – do what you want to do –
What’s holding you back?
Will you put any of Bronnie’s researched regrets ahead of creating an everyday that you want?
TOC Quote Galleries
Self Care is a HOT topic and very present for many!
As part of our Quote Gallery Series – we worked one up for Self Care to Nourish your eyes,
Inspire you and assure you that you are far from alone.
Grab a cuppa and check it out HERE.
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A free guide to 5 Steps to Create More Time, Get More Sleep & have More energy.
If you would like to go further faster – book a cuppa with your Catalyst Coach HERE.
We can accelerate your outcomes with you.
Remember, sustainable change happens one step at a time.
Take care of you,
- Life is too short to stay stuck in struggle
- Decide what you want and go for it
- Stop working so hard & people pleasing
- Create time and Energy to do more of what you love.
At the Tides of Change & The Wave, we can walk with you to connect to your purpose and make living your intentional everyday your reality.
Book your Complimentary 60 minute Consult here