A few weeks ago, my weekly radio show, “The Conscious Caregiver”, focused upon how we can come to the so-called end of life without carrying regret into those other worlds. At this season of rebirth and renewal, it feels fitting to dive further into the topic.
To accord credit, certain points below are inspired by a book authored by palliative care nurse, Bronnie Ware, called The Top Five Regrets of the Dying: A Life Transformed by the Dearly Departing. Allow me to go beyond the expected responses of wishing to have stayed in better touch with friends and not having worked so hard.
Releasing Others’ Expectations
How many of you feel like (even today), you’re living out others’ expectations rather than your own dreams? I’ll bet I’d find more than one! It started in childhood when you subtly absorbed your elders’ unfulfilled hopes. Parents are a prime source – like it or not. Though initially furious over my not becoming a teacher, my school principal father eventually agreed with my choices. I therefore ask: When will you start listening to your still-small voice within?
Expressing Our Feelings
Am I the only one who clamped down for decades on how I was really feeling? Am I alone in taking years to reclaim my voice? I doubt it. Lately, I’ve come to understand from several parenting coach radio guests the exact reasons why I learned to rarely cry around my parents. Unexpressed sorrow hugely impacted the early stages of my caregiving journey. As a result, I inquire: When will you start being true to you and unleash your authentic self?
Allowing In Happiness
Who here actually wishes you knew what makes you happy? This seemingly-elusive quality has drawn in sages across the millennia. Recently, I’ve discerned a common theme among webinars I listen to. Namely, happiness is our natural state. We ‘simply’ need to open to it. By no means have integrated these core insights. I remain in processing mode. Nonetheless, I suspect it has something to do with being true to you. Can we open to our Essence?
Reaching Zero Regrets
Bottom-line, let us not be forced to confront these questions in the way a deeply-cherished friend was. Last June, he was given a terminal cancer diagnosis with two or three months to live. He passed away in early September.
If you learned – today – that you have 2-3 months to live, what would you regret?
To prevent such a tragic fate, please connect with me for a confidential Free Readiness Session at https://www.copingwithuncopeableparents.com/book-my-readiness-session/.