This year both my mother and my brother died. It has made me stop and think very seriously about how I live my life. My niece posted this article on Facebook in December and I’ve adapted it for myself. It was a list of the top regrets told by people who are dying. I’ve decided to turn the regrets into things to do. Here are my wishes for everyone for the coming year:
(adapted from the Top 5 Regrets of the Dying)
Life is a choice.
It is YOUR life.
Choose consciously, choose wisely, choose honestly.
I’ve turned the top regrets into things to do, in order:
- Have the courage to live a life true to you, not the life others expect of you*.
- Don’t work so hard.
- Have the courage to express your feelings*.
- Stay in touch with friends.
- Let yourself be happy.
#1 and #3 have particular significance in that they both have to do with honesty – a concept that is very important to me. I am one of those people that believes there is no such thing as a white lie – there are only lies (some say it is a disorder). There are many who imply that lying is a normal and necessary part of social interaction. I don’t believe that. While it is not necessary to say everything that pops into your head, it is possible to be honest without being hurtful. I think we have an obligation to never say anything we don’t believe to be true.
This year I have become especially aware of how damaging it is to relationships when people say things they don’t really mean, even nice things. That’s a form of lying too.