The 11 biggest regrets in life that mattered most

WHAT MATTERS MOST - Atty. Josephus B. Jimenez (The Freeman) - January 11, 2021 - 12:00am

Having read the biographies of many great men and women from all over the world, having interviewed some of them and listened to the stories of prominent characters, I have gathered nuggets of very valuable lessons that we and our children should listen to and learn from.

Even the most successful in the eyes of humanity and even the wealthiest and the most famous have some regrets in their old age and in their deathbeds. If only they could live again and start all over once more, they would have lived differently, more passionately perhaps, they could have enjoyed life a little more, preserved some ruined relationships and forgiven old friends who committed some disappointing things. Some of them would say that they should have married another person, while others blamed themselves having abandoned or disappointed their parents, spouses, siblings, and close friends. Others regretted not having enough guts to say the things they truly cared about, or not having asserted themselves before some domineering characters like mothers, fathers, spouses, or bosses.

First, the regret of not having found their true purpose in life, their calling, or career. They just followed the dictates of their parents or some dominant figures in their family. They should have examined their own heart to find what really mattered most to them, and what could give them the most fulfilling life. They ended up with no passion doing the things they really did not care much about, half-hearted, equivocating, and always lukewarm. Second, marrying the wrong person who brought much burdens, worries, and heartaches, not finding soulmates, and ending up in divorce, separation, or unhappy, meaningless, troubled and rocky marital and family life. Third, living to work and not working to live, not preparing enough for retirement, squandering all money in younger years and ending up penniless in old age.

Fourth, not having true and lasting friends, abandoning the authentic ones and hanging out with the free riders and suckers. When you are rich and famous, you will be surrounded by suckers, but when you are down with nothing, you will be alone on your knees. Success has many fathers, failure is an orphan. Fifth, not having asserted themselves before very strong bullies in their life, like family figures, dads, moms, or parents-in-law, office bosses, and even some domineering officials in the government. They should have realized early enough that in matters of style, they could dance to the music, but in matters of principles, they should stand like a rock. Sixth, compromising what matters most like integrity and honor for the sake of what matters less, like money, prestige, or power. They ended up losing it all

Seventh, not taking care of their health. They ruined their bodies trying to amass wealth. When they got sick, they gave up their wealth in order to regain good health. Too late, they ended up losing both. Eighth, they were nerds in schools and graduated with honors, but refused to become entrepreneurs and contended themselves being employees all their life. They grew up old and poor, while their less-academically accomplished classmates, who went into business, became much richer and comfortable. Ninth, believing that being richer is equivalent to being happier. Wrong. Most of the richer ones have more headaches and their children bickered over the millions they left behind. Tenth, loving relatives and friends too much to the extent of committing wrongs. They ruined their honor, reputation, and peaceful lives. The ones they helped most gave them the most destructive damage and pain.

Eleventh, the worst regret of refusing to forgive, dying with resentment and carrying grudges to the grave. The unhappy person carries a frown inside his coffin. He is already in hell. The one who lived a happy life wears a smile to his grave. He finds his heaven, and in his last moments hopes to have even a happier one in the great beyond. Tell your children about these so that they can avoid now what they will regret much later, but too late in life.

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