I was talking to a friend last night. He hates his job; it’s obvious he hates his job. Whenever anyone asks him what he does he tells people it’s boring. The job, well it comes with a seven-figure salary. More than anyone I know he is in the perfect position to make a change, so I asked him why doesn’t he just quit?
Those words are like a death knoll. They are a sign of resignation and a perception that you have lost control over your future.
As you get older another but is added to the list; the mortgage, children, etc. The optimism of youth becomes weighed down under the drudgery of work and the humdrum existence of a nine to five office life. People from my parents’ generation, most of whom have spent 40 years working have just resigned themselves to this. In fact for many they have been looking forwards to the light of the tunnel that is retirement, the last but… Thought maybe not.
Here is a list of the top five regrets of the dying compiled by an Australian nurse who cared for patients in the last 12 weeks of their lives.
1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.
3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.
It’s a simple list, yet it is filled with the silent but, from the past. It is a lament of the failure to make decisions that could have brought happiness, yet were overlooked, because of circumstance. After all, there was always time. Yet those choices were never acted upon and in the end there was no more time.
Almost everyone has something in their lives that they wish they could change or simply want to change. For some those changes may seem unobtainable, but the opposite is true. The only person that can make those changes is you.
The best time to plant a tree is twenty years ago; the second best time is now.
I recently came across this simple Chinese proverb that inspired me. As I near my 31st birthday, there are many things that I look back on with regret and opportunities that I missed or chose to overlook. While I can’t change the past I’m doing my best to create a future that will make me happy, which starts with travelling and doing a job that I love.
I think I heard somewhere: Look back only for a moment to learn from your mistakes, and then only look forward so that you can improve your life. That’s why I live with no regrets, even though there are many things that I did in the past that I’m not so proud of. But we’re here, and we’re alive, aren’t we?! So let’s live! Great post 🙂
I’d never heard that saying before. It’s a great way to live your life 🙂
I waited until I turned 50 for my RTW. In hindsight, could have done that one way sooner. If anyone is on the fence about chucking it all and taking their journey, just go already!
Well at least you chose to go at 50, some people never get around to living their dreams out.
It took me 37 years but I decided life was too short to live one more moment in a life that was unfulfilled. So my husband and I sold everything, quit our jobs and decided to travel for as long as we can. 15 months we are different people, happy people and now life a life we will not regret at the end. We have no idea how long we can travel for before we have to return to the real world but for now we will enjoy every single second and count out blessings every day.
It’s really great to hear about people who are achieving their dreams and just enjoying life. Too many people look back and complain about the chances they missed, but do nothing to change their present. I’m glad you managed to grab the moment and everything’s going great for you 🙂
I was inspired by the five regrets of dying people. I have early retired to enjoy my life more and this is a great reaffirmation that I have taken the right path. thank you.
If this article reaffirmed the choices you made then it sounds like you made the right decision which is great 🙂
I have a marriage, job and mortgage. Wouldn’t have it any other way. I have the home I dreamed of, the woman I love and a job that exceedingly allows for a proper work-life balance.
That’s great. If it’s what you want in life and you’ve achieved it then that is all you could ask for 🙂
Hey nico. Great writing!
My lifelong goals are to explore europe. Austria soon i hope!
wish me luckkk!
Good luck and all the best for the journey!
Love your site. My husband and I both retired…we travel everywhere we can. Don’t ask how we can afford it but we budget save and dig into redundancy. This is what life I should an about..our memory bank is filling up and that’s all we need as when we take our dying breath and our lives flash before us we know we have Lived!!! Our greatest adventures have been in South America especially visiting Uros Islands and also have our trip upriver in a klotegg in Borneo where we stopped off to see the Orangutans At Camp Leakey..we were lucky enough to see many wild ones there that wet March day….also like you I was photographed many times whilst visiting temples in Java…thought I was a movie Star(far from It) Next year we have another b I get adventure planned…Singapore Japan South Korea YANGTZE RIVER..Lanhkawai Nepal And Tibet. Unfortunately we are gone we will leave only photos and tales of our travels. I have a saying ‘we can’t die once we have a holiday booked ‘ so we keep booking. I have many stories to share with anyone who wants to chat.
I think I had some regrets in my life too. Like I didn´t go to the college and I really wanted to be a doctor, but I´m trying to do my best now an I´m happy with my life.