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The Top 10 Regrets People Have About Their Lives - featured image
By Michael Yardney

The Top 10 Regrets People Have About Their Lives

What's your biggest regret?  

I know I've had a few, but that's life isn't it?

In a study  published in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science romantic regrets were the most common type.

And women had twice as many romantic regrets as among men.

For men, work regrets were most widespread.

Here is the full list of most commonly described regrets:

  1. Romance, lost love – 18.1%                     mind set rich money lesson think motivational learn teach money
  2. Family – 15.9%
  3. Education – 13.1%
  4. Career – 12.2%
  5. Finance – 9.9%
  6. Parenting – 9.0%
  7. Health – 6.3%
  8. Other – 5.6%
  9. Friends – 3.6%
  10. Spirituality – 2.3%

Professor Neal Roese, an author of this study, said:

“We found that one’s life circumstances, such as accomplishments or shortcomings, inject considerable fuel into the fires of regret.

Although regret is painful, it is an essential component of the human experience.”

Single people were most likely to have romantic regret, the researchers found.

 In general people regretted actions and inactions to equal degrees.

But it was regrets about things that people didn’t do that lasted the longest.

Education seems to play a role in career regrets, the study’s authors explain: 

“Americans with high levels of education had the most career-related regrets.

Apparently, the more education obtained, the more acute may be the sensitivity to aspiration and fulfillment.”

Professor Roese said:

“Past research on regrets focused on samples of college students, which made it difficult to glean insights into the wider population.

This research, however, offers a unique and more thorough look into the psychology of regret to further understand how regret connects to life circumstances and its impact on decision making.”

Of course Frank Sinatra had something to say about this decades ago in his signature song I Did It My Way..

And now, the end is near
And so I face the final curtain
My friend, I'll say it clear
I'll state my case, of which I'm certain Frank Sinatra 1281484 1920

I've lived a life that's full
I've traveled each and every highway
But more, much more than this
I did it my way

Regrets, I've had a few 
But then again, too few to mention
I did what I had to do
And saw it through without exemption.

I planned each charted course
Each careful step along the byway
And more, much more than this
I did it my way

Yes, there were times, I'm sure you knew
When I bit off more than I could chew
But through it all, when there was doubt
I ate it up and spit it out
I faced it all and I stood tall
And did it my way

I've loved, I've laughed and cried Jazz 998270 1920
I've had my fill my share of losing
And now, as tears subside
I find it all so amusing

To think I did all that
And may I say - not in a shy way
Oh no, oh no, not me
I did it my way

For what is a man, what has he got
If not himself, then he has naught
To say the things he truly feels
And not the words of one who kneels
The record shows I took the blows
And did it my way

Yes, it was my way

About Michael Yardney Michael is a director of Metropole Property Strategists who help their clients grow, protect and pass on their wealth through independent, unbiased property advice and advocacy. He's once again been voted Australia's leading property investment adviser and one of Australia's 50 most influential Thought Leaders. His opinions are regularly featured in the media.
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