In 2009, a palliative nurse called Bronnie Ware wrote a blog post on the top 5 regrets of the dying that went viral.
As a palliative nurse, Bronnie spent many hours talking to the dying and was privileged to be able to hear their last wishes and also their regrets.
“When questioned about any regrets they had or anything they would do differently, common themes surfaced again and again.”
A copy of the original blog post can be access here which I highly recommend you read in full, but in summary the top 5 regrets of the dying as written by Ware were:
- 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.
So, what’s my point to this blog post?
Well, it’s simple really, I firmly believe that projecting forward into the future and imaging yourself in your last days can be a really powerful exercise.
Not in a morbid way, but in a positive way.
Life is so busy that we can become rolled up in the day to day motions of living and forget to take a step back and think about what’s important to us.
What really matters.
That’s why projecting forward and thinking about how an older version of you is going to think like is extremely powerful.
It can put things into perspective.
Some people can’t associate with this exercise and that’s fine, but what harm can it do?
My advice is the next time you’re feeling angry, upset or in a dilemma, try to stop and take time out and think about Bronnie Ware’s list and also ask yourself:
“What would my 100-year-old self think about this?”
It will give you a powerful new perspective.
I hope this helped you.