Posted by Holly D Russell
Is living life with no regrets even possible? While I don’t think so, perhaps it is possible to live without MAJOR regrets. While we all have some regret over a conversation where we put our foot in our mouth, or wish we had handled a situation differently, it is not to compare to the regrets we have either as we are dying or lose one who is dear to us in some way. In her article “Regrets of the Dying,” Bonnie Ware states, “people grow a lot when faced with their own mortality.” You can see her full article here: http://www.inspirationandchai.com/Regrets-of-the-Dying.html After caring for the dying for 12 years, Bonnie compelled a list of five things people regret when it comes down to their last days on earth.
1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
2. I wish I didn’t work so hard.
3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.
It sounds like truly living fulfilled is the theme to this list. Things that matter, fulfilling your life’s purpose and relationships. Those are what is important. When my father passed away a few years ago, we had plenty of time to prepare. Although he did tell me “goodbye” one evening, I kept expecting him to give me some parting words of wisdom, or maybe tell me to take care of my mother. Those words never came. He did say he had lived a full life. In the end, when faced with dying, my father didn’t do anything differently, — except fight against the cancer.
In the past I have blogged about the vivaciousness of the Sweet Potato Queens and the importance of “living life intentionally.” Going back to one of my favorite quotes, “Every man dies, not every man truly lives.” I want to encourage you to look over this list of regrets and try to change some pattern of just existing for today. So many of us are just in survival mode that we do not really get to live. Think about how you can change as to not have one of these regrets. It doesn’t just happen, it takes intention.
As a Christian, I would think one of the regrets would be, “Not living for God more.” In Jer. 29:11 it states, “I have plans for you declares the Lord.” God has plans for us, I wonder, if when we die, we have achieved those plans. Michael Hyatt’s blog post just a couple of days ago, http://michaelhyatt.com/why-you-arent-dead-yet.html, blogged that if you were still alive, it is because you haven’t completed your purpose yet. While I am not sure I completely agree with him, it is a nice thought.
Basically living life with no regrets comes down to loving others, being happy and fulfilling God’s purpose for you.