The Daily Mail has recently published the results of a survey that says people spend around 44 minutes every week on regretting our past.
We wish we’d saved more money, traveled more, stayed in touch with friends and that we’d never started smoking. (I’m thankful that smoking is something I’ll never have to regret. Having a father who was a heavy smoker was enough to convince me to never even try lighting up.)
I guess that among the regrets that people identified, there are some things that we can change for our future and others that we need to leave behind so we can move on. Regrets can paralyze us and keep us living in the past yet if we live without some sense of regret we won’t learn the life lessons that arise and we’re destined to keep repeating the same mistakes.
The Top Ten
The top ten regrets were:
1. Not having saved more money
2. Not having worked harder at school
3. Not having exercised more
4. Not seeing more of the world
5. Taking up smoking
6. Not staying in touch with people more
7. Not having taken more care of our bodies when younger
8. Not having appreciated an elderly relative more before he or she passed away
9. Not having taken more photos of experiences growing up
10. Getting married too early.
When I look at that list I can give a nod to a few but I won’t let them keep me wishing for what might have been. We all make mistakes but we need to acknowledge those mistakes, take appropriate action, then move forward. Sometimes we need to forgive others and other times we need to accept the forgiveness that we’ve been offered.
Can you identify with any of the regrets listed or do you have regrets of your own? Do you spend a lot of time thinking of how differently life could have been or are you using past mistakes to learn and move on? Are there some regrets that just won’t let you move on?
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