Predicting your regrets

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Everyone has regrets, and these are usually about the past. But is there a way of knowing what you’ll regret in the future?

An interesting question

I was watching a video-blog (or vlog) by Thomas ‘TomSka’ Ridgewell called What I’d Do Differently, where he talks about some of his regrets and what he’d do to change them for the better.

While this isn’t an original premise, an individual’s experience is unique to the individual. I thought TomSka’s whish that he’d learned how to fight was interesting.

He didn’t want to be in fights, but as he says: ‘If I knew how to throw or take a punch, I wouldn’t have been so scared of everything and everyone.’

Anyway, the vlog’s call to action seems common at first, with TomSka asking the audience what they would change about their past. But then he adds a surprising follow-up question: ‘In five, ten or twenty years time, when you look back at yourself at this moment, what will you be wishing you’d done differently?’

How do you answer that?

This concluding question fascinated me because it’s asking the viewer to predict their future regrets. I spent a bit of time wondering if this was possible and what you’d consider to make those predictions.

Would you think about your current flaws, and how these could negatively impact your life? Or would you reflect on your past regrets? If you did, is this cheating the question? Because you’re going by what’s happened before to find out what’s yet to come?

I’m not going to list my flaws here – that may, may – be the subject of another blog post. I just wanted to share my amazement with TomSka’s question.

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As I’m not sharing my flaws, I won’t ask you to, either. But I would be interested in hearing about how you’d predict your future regrets. Would you do this based on your present, or your past?

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