An Australian nurse, Bronnie Ware, spent several years working in palliative care, taking care of people in the last 3 – 12 weeks of their life. She interviewed these people, recorded their dying epiphanies and wrote about them in her blog “Inspiration and Chai.” Her blog got so much attention that she eventually published her findings in a book called “The Top Five Regrets of Dying”.
She asked the patients what they regretted and what they would do differently if they could do it over again. In her blog, Ms. Ware outlined the five most common themes. They were:
1. I wish I had had the courage to live a life that was true to myself rather than the one that others expected of me.
How many of us put our dreams on a back burner and do what our family thinks we should do instead of what we really want to do?
2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.
What have you given up in pursuit of your work goals? Have you missed out on important events in your family’s life or not made time for things that you now wish you had done?
3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
Have you been resentful because you couldn’t tell someone how you really felt? Were you afraid to speak up when you probably should have?
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
Is there someone who you lost touch with because you were just too busy or so caught up in your own life that you just didn’t make the effort?
5. I wish I had let myself be happier.
Are you content but not really happy? Is there something you could have done different that would have made your life a happier one?
What are your top regrets? Take a minute and think about them. Don’t come to the end of your life and then be filled with regret about things that you could have done differently.
We can’t help you with the way you have lived your life until now but we can help you think about estate planning and how you can get your affairs in order. Don’t pass onto your loved ones a regret about the way you left your estate. Go to www.diesmart.com for more information.