What's your biggest regret as an adult?
I regret nothing.
Having regrets is completely pointless.
There is no doubt in my mind that a regret comes from an erroneous assumption that had you done B instead of A everything would be fine now. That you wouldn't have had all these troubles, worries, problems, etc. (or that you wouldn't have them today).
This is a wishful thinking. Such assumption is ridiculous and naive to say the least. It's stupid.
He would live.
I would be a happy person.
She wouldn't have ended up on the streets.
We would be a happy family.
The company would still operate.
We would be rich.
None of it is true. Or, to put it differently, all of it is just one possibility (out of many). But it doesn't stop people from believing that the reality would be better, that their lives (or the lives of their loved ones) would be better. They assume that alternative shit wouldn't have happened. Which clearly is a wishful thinking. It's a one big fucking lunacy!
People don't realize it, because, in their lunacy, they truly believe that everything would have been (would be) better. The only scenario that they see (the only alternative to what really happened) is the favorable scenario for them. They believe everything would be just fine in their lives had their choices been different.
It is important to emphasize the fact that a favorable outcome (favorable alternative past scenario) which we imagine is necessary for the feeling of regret to occur in the first place. Without it we would have only a mere fantasy which wouldn't affect us in any way. We wouldn't care if the past was as it actually was or if it matched our fantasy. For a regret to make sense (occur) there must be something to gain for us in this alternative scenario. It has to be a preferable scenario.
If you're experiencing a regret it means you're fantasizing about the past and you wish you could have been part of this fantasy (because you would be better off).
Were we convinced that a favorable, perfect alternative reality of the past (the improved version of what really happened) was never possible (and that's what I believe - what happened happened and that's it, in a different reality everything would have been different, not just this one tiny piece which bothers us), or had we at least assumed that in this alternative reality things we wouldn't approve of or welcome in our lives at least could happen too (just as the good ones we so eagerly and immediately take for granted, without a moment's hesitation) we would immediately understand the pointlessness of regrets. Why regret not having moved to NYC, when in our alternative reality of the past we could have died unexpectedly several days before we even set foot on the plane. Why couldn't it have happened? Why do we always assume that alternative shit wouldn't have happened.
We are wishful thinkers and that's why regrets exist in our heads. But they make zero sense.
If I could go back in time, what would I change in my life and why?
What I wish someone had taught or told me when I was in my late teenage years/ early 20s?
Nothing. But not because my life was so damn fantastic up until this point, or I knew everything and couldn't have possibly been wiser or smarter, or had the absolutely best role models in the world, but because it is a flawed thinking that if we took this one thing (this unfortunate event, this bad decision / choice) out from a person's life, or that had this person possessed a greater awareness or improved knowledge about the world (something his or her parents or other adults could have taught or told him or her), or with the help and support of a much better role model / champion, everything would be much better, or even perfect.
That's the greatest bullshit ever! It's ludicrous to assume that everything would be just fine if we only took this or that out. It's the most vivid example of our wishful thinking.
It's equally ludicrous to assume that right now everything would be just fine or that our lives would be much better, or even perfect, if only we, as young adults (20 or 30 years ago), had this greater awareness or improved knowledge about the world (something our parents or other adults could have taught or told us, or instilled in us), or the help and support of a superb role model / champion (way better than the ones we actually had).
It's far more likely that if we changed that one piece in that story (little or big, doesn't matter) other things would change too. Some pieces would remain the same (or be only slightly different) but some wouldn't - we can't be sure what would happen. And thus we have no idea what the reality would really look like if we changed only this one small piece.
And nevertheless we always imagine this perfect reality in which we would live.
We fool ourselves that everything would be better. Because what? Because the universe knows what would be better for such and such a person and it would make sure that only good things would happen to that person?
Are you kidding me? If the universe knew what is good and bad for us and if it cared that we shouldn't experience the bad, would we have the bad (would we ask questions How this bad thing or that bad thing affected our development or what would we change? or What I wish someone had taught or told me when I was in my late teenage years/ early 20s?)?
We want to believe that everything would be better because it's nice to at least know what went wrong and what the reality would be like if it didn't.
So when we write those alternative life stories (where the circumstances of our lives would be enhanced - where this or that mistake or misfortune didn't happen) almost nobody assumes that instead alternative, unknown to us, mistakes or misfortunes (alternative shit) would have happened. And it's totally possible that they would have happened (before or after the unfortunate event happened which we would like to erase from our lives).
We could have lost our mother at birth, or both our parents a couple of years later in a plane crash, or been born a transsexual, or been a victim of 9/11, or been killed by a serial killer or a lightning or a landslide or an avalanche, or lost vision in both eyes, or lost the ability to speak. We could have died at birth, or later in a car accident leaving three children and a spouse who was the love of our life, or become the next Hitler, or gone to the next Vietnam War or something, or been born with a disability, or been shot dead in school, or been killed by some weird disease spread by mosquitos, or been kidnapped or raped, or gone to jail for 10 years without having done anything wrong (legal system failed), etc.
No, none of it would happen. Why would it happen?, we think. Or we don't even realize it could happen. If only someone had taught or told me this or that, or been there for me, or supported (championed) me when I was in my late teenage years/ early 20s. If only father hadn't yelled at mother. If only mother had been emotionally stable. If only mother and father had stayed together. If only I hadn't been raised by a single mother. If only I had been born five years earlier (or later). If only I hadn't married that woman. If only I hadn't joined this gang. Nonsense!
The only place where it can work are fiction stories (in books or movies). When you've written a fiction book and thus created some reality pertinent only to this story, this reality is fixed. You can ponder what would make the story (the book, or the movie) even better and you can actually improve that story. Why? Because you have total control of it - you control all pieces. It's a fixed reality which can only be changed by you, the author. Life doesn't work this way.
Part of it appeared in my posts
As an adult I don't regret anything in life. To be honest it's not that my life has been perfect, but then I feel whatever happens has shaped me to be a better person. All the mistakes have taught me how to do it better the next time.
Actually life is too short to have regrets. If you don't like something about your life, you cam always change it. I would not want any other retake for life. It's best the way it is
I regret not respecting the person that deserved the respect before the person passed away. It is killing me inside. Without stating the story, I was deceived into it and due to the way of life, I was blinded. My eyes opened up after the person passed away and what ever I do now will not make any difference.
Humans are the worst animals in life. Just watch/listen to the news.
everyone one in the world would want the same old days back. Me too regret the adulthood missing some of the wonderful time which includes.
- The day i learned to ride bicycle alone.
- The cricket days with my childhood friends
- The days when i played sega video games title SuperMario,contra,tank,duckhunt and every other games.
- The day we were throwing stones at mangoes in our roads. and many many things