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Health and Sanity

Danielle Batist
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piqer: Danielle Batist
Tuesday, 05 December 2017

“I Wish I Hadn’t Worked So Hard”, And Other Regrets Of The Dying

This is the first time that I’m posting a piq that’s almost six years old. It’s one of those that is relevant to life at any time.

This story started as a blog by Australian palliative care nurse Bronnie Ware, in 2009. By 2012, more than eight million people had read her post and when the Guardian republished it, it stayed on its top-visited story list for years too. Ware turned her blog into a memoir, which has since been translated into 27 languages, and she became a motivational speaker.

She believes the original story will always find new audiences: “As long as there is a denial about death on a societal level, there will always be a need for these little subtle messages.”

Interestingly, the regrets haunting her terminally ill patients did not involve a lack of ticking off ‘bucket list’ items like bungee jumps. Instead, the most given answers were what we might think of as cliché. Men in particular cited “I wish I hadn’t worked so hard” among their top regrets.

The piece ends with a helpful question to remind us to live meaningfully and change the things we know we might regret in the end.

What would your biggest regret be if this was your last day of life?

“I Wish I Hadn’t Worked So Hard”, And Other Regrets Of The Dying
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