What regrets do you have about your life?

What does time have to do with regrets? I once heard someone say that the only thing you will regret when your life is over are those things that you wanted to do but never did. Some of these things may be adventures that were never taken or people you wanted to meet and never did. They may also include apologies you wanted to make or forgiveness you wanted and never gave or received. You may look back on your life someday with no regrets as my friend Harold Johnson did. However, I think it is a rare individual that will live their life with no regrets. Time plays an important role in this process since we often act as though we would have unlimited time to fix things. I will call and apologize tomorrow. I will see them later. I will take that trip next year. What if tomorrow never comes? Who among us knows the time of our death?

If you could take a walk to a cemetery and talk to the people therein, what do you think they would they say about their lives and their regrets? I can imagine how many would say that they regret they never really prioritized their lives according to what really mattered. Mary was struck by a car while on a shopping trip. Paul had a heart attack while watching a soccer game. Israel was sitting at a bar when shot during an attempted hold-up. Sarah had always wanted to have enough money to visit the Holy land but could never seem to save enough for the trip. Jasmine says she would have liked to have spent more time with her son and daughter. Mohamed had not seen his parents in over two years because he was too busy with school and work.

What regrets about your life do you have today? What can you do about them today? Some of them you can do nothing about, but others you can. Like they say in the Serenity Prayer: “Lord, help us to know the difference.” Make a list of regrets you might be able to do something about. Be optimistic. Don’t put this off until tomorrow. Do it today. When you have made this list, choose one to work on for the next week or month. Perhaps this will become a good habit. When you have finished your list, how do you think you will feel?

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