While Edith Piaf may have boldly sung about having no regrets, according to a survey, over-60s spend at least five minutes a day thinking about the things we wish we’d done.
A British company asked 2000 people about their lives so far and compiled the following top five regrets.
Top five regrets for over-60s
- Not travelling and seeing more of the world
- Not staying in touch with more friends
- Wasting years with the wrong partner
- Not working harder at school
- Not telling a lost relative that they loved them
The survey also asked about the things in the course of their lives that have made over-60s most proud. The top five results, as revealed byare:
- Getting married
- Passing their driving test
- Finishing university
Bearing in mind the research was conducted by a travel company, the answers to both questions may seem a little, shall we say, top-level.
I’m reminded of a beautiful piece writing by Bronnie Ware, an Australian nurse who spent several years working in palliative care, caring for patients in the last 12 weeks of their lives. She wrote a very different list, which became a book called The Top Five Regrets of the Dying.
- I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
- I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.
- I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
- I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
- I wish that I had let myself be happier.
How do these “top fives” compare to how you feel about your life? Do you have any regrets? Can you turn any of these regrets into goals?