The Five Regrets of the Dying

The 5 regrets of the dying by Bronnie Ware

Simula noong nabasa ko ang artikulo na ito na mula sa libro na sinulat ni Bronnie Ware ay nagmuni-muni talaga ako dahil napakahalaga nito para sa akin. Dahil ayoko rin na magkaroon ng pagsisi sa huling yugto ng aking buhay kung hindi bibigyan ng halaga ang limang bagay na ito sa ngayon. Now na ika nga.

Nais ko lamang na ipaalam ang mga bagay na ito sa inyo upang makapagmuni-muni rin kayo sa mga tunay na dapat pahalagahan sa ating buhay. Salamat.

Top 5 Regrets of the Dying
For many years I worked in palliative care. My patients were those who had gone home to die. Some incredibly special times were shared. I was with them for the last 3 to 12 weeks of their lives.
People grow a lot when they are faced with their own mortality. I learnt never to underestimate someone’s capacity for growth. Some changes were phenomenal. Each experienced a variety of emotions, as expected, denial, fear, anger, remorse, more denial and eventually acceptance. Every single patient found their peace before they departed though, every one of them.When questioned about any regrets they had or anything they would do differently, common themes surfaced again and again. Here are the most common five:
1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.

This was the most common regret of all. When people realise that their life is almost over and look back clearly on it, it is easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled. Most people had not honored even a half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they had made, or not made. It is very important to try and honour at least some of your dreams along the way. From the moment that you lose your health, it is too late. Health brings a freedom very few realise, until they no longer have it.
2. I wish I didn’t work so hard.
This came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their children’s youth and their partner’s companionship. Women also spoke of this regret. But as most were from an older generation, many of the female patients had not been breadwinners. All of the men I nursed deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence.
By simplifying your lifestyle and making conscious choices along the way, it is possible to not need the income that you think you do. And by creating more space in your life, you become happier and more open to new opportunities, ones more suited to your new lifestyle.
3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with others. As a result, they settled for a mediocre existence and never became who they were truly capable of becoming. Many developed illnesses relating to the bitterness and resentment they carried as a result.
We cannot control the reactions of others. However, although people may initially react when you change the way you are by speaking honestly, in the end it raises the relationship to a whole new and healthier level. Either that or it releases the unhealthy relationship from your life. Either way, you win.
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
Often they would not truly realise the full benefits of old friends until their dying weeks and it was not always possible to track them down. Many had become so caught up in their own lives that they had let golden friendships slip by over the years. There were many deep regrets about not giving friendships the time and effort that they deserved. Everyone misses their friends when they are dying.
It is common for anyone in a busy lifestyle to let friendships slip. But when you are faced with your approaching death, the physical details of life fall away. People do want to get their financial affairs in order if possible. But it is not money or status that holds the true importance for them. They want to get things in order more for the benefit of those they love. Usually though, they are too ill and weary to ever manage this task. It is all comes down to love and relationships in the end. That is all that remains in the final weeks, love and relationships.
5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.

This is a surprisingly common one. Many did not realise until the end that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. The so-called ‘comfort’ of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their physical lives. Fear of change had them pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content. When deep within, they longed to laugh properly and have silliness in their life again.
When you are on your deathbed, what others think of you is a long way from your mind. How wonderful to be able to let go and smile again, long before you are dying.
Life is a choice. It is YOUR life. Choose consciously, choose wisely, choose honestly. Choose happiness.
– – – – – – – – – – –
For more information, please visit Bronnie’s official website at http://www.bronnieware.com or her blog at http://www.inspirationandchai.com.

17 comments on “The Five Regrets of the Dying

  1. hello, lolo,

    i had several up close and personal look at sickness and dying in the family. am still reeling from the effects, honestly…

    yes, much of our lives, we are caught up in the business of making it materially and socially. so little time given for personal relationships, appreciating the surroundings and the people around us and in giving back, so to speak. we’re also tied down by the complexities, the brokenness and dysfunctions we see around us, sadly…

    when i was 16, i said to myself that i was going to live only up to my age last year. i don’t know… but am negotiating another year now and am thinking, maybe am going to do more. it’s a new lease, considering. the next years may not be as exciting or as adrenalin-rushed as before but maybe, am going to do different things, haha… i hope to be more circumspect and more focused with my new pursuits. sana nga…^^

    i’ve had lots of pains, hurts and humiliations. but my regret, as i remember, is about not having spent more time with our mother. the other experiences were, are, trials, fumblings and foundations for what am going to do next in this one-act play. i hope am still brave…🙂 regards and cheers!

    • Hello 35andupcynicismonhold,

      Salamat sa pagbisita at tunay napakaganda ang iyong reflection and sharing.

      Sa totoo lang ay dumaan din ako sa unimaginable sickness and dying sa aking family. Pero sabi nga ang mga ito ay parte ng ating buhay, ang suffering at dying…dito natin daw kasi ma-appreciate ang buhay at kung paano tayo mabubuhay. Dito ko talaga nasandalan ang aking pananampalataya. May mga pangyayari kasi sa ating buhay na tunay naman di natin kakayanin at maso-solve kung hindi hihingi ng tulong sa nakakataas sa atin…sa ating Creator at ang tunay na gabay ng mga mahal sa buhay.

      Tama ka. Sa ating makabagong mundo ay natatali tayo sa mga materyal at mga bagay na akala natin ay magbibigay sa atin ng tunay na kaligayahan. Tunay na ang mga mahal sa buhay at ang napakagandang kapaligiran ay sapat na upang makamit ang kaligayahan. Ito daw kasi ang mga permanenteng bagay na di mawawala sa ating buhay na tunay naman na paraiso na pinagkaloob sa atin ng Maykapal(hindi ang mga Malls, kotse, bahay, gadgets, pera, attachments, power, entitlement…). Marami sa pinag-uubusan natin sa mundong ito sa ngayon ay tunay naman na temporary lamang at maglalaho pagdating ng panahon.

      Itong binanggit mo na ito…

      “…in giving back, so to speak. we’re also tied down by the complexities, the brokenness and dysfunctions we see around us, sadly…”

      Para sa akin ay nangyayari ang mga ito sa ating buhay kapag hindi tayo naging maingat sa kung ano ba ang mahalaga sa ating buhay, yun tanong na saan ba naka-focus ang ating buhay??

      Matindi na kasi ang inpluwensya nang ating makabagong teknolohiya sa ating buhay kasama na dito ang mass media. Ang isa na rito ay ang mga balita sa ating mga napapanood sa TV at nababasa sa dyaryo…tunay naman na napaka-negatibo ang dating sa ating buhay. At kung papansinin ano ang magiging epekto nito sa ating buhay?? magke-create ito ng takot na makapipigil sa atin na ma-enjoy ang buhay, may epekto rin ito na dahil gusto natin na makawala sa negatibo ay babaling tayo sa mga materyal na bagay upang hanapin ang mga positibong bagay na sa bandang huli ay mga temporary lamang. At tunay namang isang trap ang mga komersyal sa TV…pansinin….mga magaganda tao, mga magaganda at guwapo(mapuputi at makinis na kutis), magandang kotse, malalaking bahay, may mga branded (na t-shirts…pantalon..). Na kung di maingat ay maniniwala tayo na ito ang tunay na kailangan sa mundong ito…ummm sobrang mali. At kung na trap na sa maling mensahe ng mga nakikita sa telebisyon…ayun magpapakamatay ang isang tao sa trabaho upang maabot lamang ang mga materyal na bagay na nakita niya sa mga kapitbahay at ang nakita sa TV…na tuluyang makakalimot na pahalagahan ang kalusugan at ang napahalagang mga oras sa pamilya. Yan lang ang aking ibig sabihin hindi masama ang maging mayaman at magtrabahong mabuti…sana lang di maging hadlang ang mga ito sa pagiging isang mabuting tao at makamit ang tunay na kaligayahan sa mundong ito.

      I-simplify(umiwas sana na magsayang ng oras sa dulot ng mga makabagong teknolohiya) lamang ang buhay at makikita ang tunay na makakapagpaligaya at siguradong magkakaroon tayo ng mahalagang oras at panahon para sa atin at sa ating relasyon sa mga mahal sa buhay.

      Nabanggit mo ang “in giving back…”

      Napakahalaga nito sa akin ngayon. Dahil para sa akin ang isang nagpapaligaya sa akin ay hindi na ang aking pansariling interest o kaligayahan. Palagi kong iniisip ang kung paano ba ako magiging blessing para sa ibang mga tao…na dun ko naman matatanggap ang tunay na kaligayahan. Siyempre balanse ito…ginugugol ko ang mahahalagang oras para sa aking pamilya, para sa ibang tao, at ang para sa akin ay naka-focus lamang sa aking ispirituwal na buhay, kalusugan at mga simpleng bagay na nagpapaligaya sa aking buhay(di materyal, di attachement sa mga materyal na bagay, di power, di entitlement).

      Para sa nabanggit mo na:

      “i’ve had lots of pains, hurts and humiliations. but my regret, as i remember, is about not having spent more time with our mother…”

      Sa ating buhay daw ay tunay na maraming tayong dadaanan na mga maliliit at malalaking failures. Pero sabi nga ito ang magtuturo sa ating buhay upang matutunan ito at tunay na makamit ang kaligayahan. Wag sanang mag-focus sa mga pagkakarapa ngunit sa bawat pagbangon sa pagkakarapa.

      Sa sinabi mong one-act play…i pray na puwede pa rin namang maging two-act play ang iyong buhay…ummm
      oo nga bakit hindi.

      Para sa akin ay just live in the moments. At ito naman ang iiwanan ko para sa iyo ang sabi ni Gandhi:

      “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”

      Cheers…enjoy life! God Bless!

      • haha, binasa ko po ang mahaba-habang homily, lolo, lols! ba’t ho nga pala hindi kayo nag-pari? isa pa, totoo ho bang as one ages mas komportable na ang isang taong pag-usapan ang subject matter ng death? ^^ hello po sa inyo…🙂

    • Haha oo parang homily nga yata sa haba. Nadala rin ako sa iyong mula sa puso na komento.

      Noong hayskul ako ay talagang parang gusto kong magpari…pero ayun naging fadre de pamilya.

      Noong naging single na ulit ako ay parang naisipan kong muli ang magpari na maging deacon sana…pero medyo lampas na pala ako sa idad kaya ayun…baka sa second life na lang…hehe.

      Para sa akin ay tunay na magaan na pag-usapan ang death kahit noon pa…dala siguro ito ng aking pananampalataya. Sa totoo lang naman ay kung may birth…dapat may death…walang exempted sa death kaya dapat lang maging bukas ang isipan at puso na kung nais maging maganda ang biyahe ng buhay. Kapag alam natin na someday ay matatapos ang buhay na ito aba dapat pagbutihin at ayusin upang di naman masayang ang ibinuhay sa napakagandang mundo na ito.

      oppps preno na muna. salamat at musta sa iyo.

  2. Nortehanon says:

    “I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.”>>Para po sa akin, ito ang isa sa pinakamahalagang natutuhan ko sa buhay. It is exhausting to live up to other’s expectation. Masaya po ako na hanggat bata pa ako ay-realize ko ito at habang maaga ay nagawa kong kumawala sa dikta ng sinasabi ng iba. It’s liberating, Lolo Jem. At yan ang isang dahilan kung bakit ako happy ngayon😉

    I hope all is well in your side of the world. God bless po.

    • Hello Miss N. Maraming salamat sa pagbisita.

      Ako man ay masaya na tahakin ang buhay na aking gusto dahil iisa lang naman ang buhay na ito, na walang pagkukunwari, na walang maskara, at ng may buong tapang na harapin ang ino-offer ng masayang buhay na sumusunod naman sa magandang pag-uugali na nais ng Maykapal.

      Ang sabi nga daw ay…”We were created an original, don’t die a copy.”

      ok naman kami dito. salamat sa pangangamusta.

      Musta & God Bless din!

  3. Yvarro says:

    Nakakalungkot naman tong post na to.. hmn… Minsan ganun nga yun… we value the word self preservation so much, and in the end we are missing the main value of life: to love and be loved…

    love sa sarili… at sa mga taong nasa paligid naten..😀

    love this post made me realize something…

    • Oo Yvarro nakakalungkot lalo na kung may mga pagsisisi sa buhay…mga mahahalagang pagsisisi na pwedeng maging masaya sana ang buhay kung di ipagwawalang-bahala ang mga ito.

      Yes…yun nga ang punto ng buhay…’love and be loved’.

      Salamat sa pagbisita & God Bless!

  4. ELIment says:

    I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me — napakatalim naman ng mga salitang ito.

    God bless po.

    • Hello Eli at maraming salamat sa pagbisita.

      Tunay ang sinabi mo matalim ang salita na iyan dahil mahalaga iyan sa ikaliligaya ng isang buhay.

      Marami kasi sa buhay natin ay tinatawag na ‘approval seeker’…yun bang iniintindi muna ang masasabi ng mga nasa paligid bago ang kung ano ba talaga ang gusto talaga sa buhay. Katulad sa pag-aaral sa kolehiyo madalas ay nasusunod ang kagustuhan ng mga magulang at yung kung ano ang pwedeng malaki ang suweldo sa kapag nagtrabaho na.

      Pero sa totoo lang talaga ay mas-masaya ang buhay kung gusto mo ang iyong ginagawa kahit ano pa man ito. Hindi mahalaga kung ito ay kikita ng malaki o magiging isang mayaman.

      Para sa akin sa kalahatian ng buhay ay di na dapat sayangin ang mga taon upang magawa ang mga naisin sa buhay…ito na ang pagkakataon na tunay na yakapin ang mahalaga at nais ma-accomplish…maging gaano man ito kasimple sa isang buhay…ang importante ay nakita at nasubukan ang mga bagay-bagay na noon ay mga naging isang pangarap na nais magawa…bago matapos at mawala ang kalakasan ng buhay.

      God Bless Eli.

  5. Utterly pent subject matter, appreciate it for information. “You can do very little with faith, but you can do nothing without it.” by Samuel Butler.

  6. I always was concerned in this topic and still am, appreciate it for posting .

  7. lelittlemermaid says:

    This article made me think and reflect on a lot of things. Kudooos!

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