transform common regrets into commands for life

In the last  month or so I have repeatedly seen a list of the 5 most common regrets a hospice nurse has heard people express at the end of their lives. It’s worth noting that there were two regrets absence from the list “I wish I made more money” and “I wish I spent more time at work”.

Paul Graham smartly turn this into a short list of commands which he keeps at the top of the todo list. Paul’s commands are:

  • Don’t ignore your dreams
  • don’t work too much
  • say what you think
  • cultivate friendships
  • be happy

It’s rare that I feel  I can improve any article Paul has posted, but this time I would suggest a more active and expansive version of Paul’s commands would be appropriate.  For me the list is:

  • pursue your calling… because sometimes you are called to something that goes beyond what you can dream
  • practice sabbath… because not working is not the same as resting
  • speak the truth in love… because we need to consider how our words affect those we speak to
  • cultivate friendships, but be receptive to all people… become surprises can be good.
  • embrace joy and gratitude… which can occur even if circumstances are hard, and we aren’t “happy”

all of which feeds into the most important: grow in love

“Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?”
And Jesus said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.” This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
–Matthew 22:36-39

Posted Under: life

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