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Common Life Regrets from the Dying

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Common Life Regrets from the Dying

Death is the most confrontative force of life. Death is the shadow looming over us in our brightest moments whispering “this is temporary” and plays upon our greatest fears. That this body and this mind is going to one day cease to exist. There is the imminent fear of not living a rich and colorful life of beauty and wholeness. 

There are common themes to the human experience. We exist to coexist, there are strong ties between happiness and our connections through friendship and relationships. There is the need for vocation, a higher purpose, that is often thrown away simply to profit engineering and working hard to pay the bills. There are emotions that dictate what we do and how we respond to situations. 

When dying we are faced to clearly see the way in which we have lived. And more than regretting what we did do, there is a tendency to regret what we did not do enough. This includes states of mind and not allowing the fullness of self to bloom.  

In the book, The Top Five Regrets of the Dying, an Australian nurse named Bronnie Ware accounts what she has observed from people at the end of their lives and their biggest regrets in life. This book teaches us how to live with wisdom so we do not have to wait until we die to have these vital, yet strangely obvious epiphanies.

Below are the most common life regrets from dying people contemplating the course of their life during their last weeks on Earth.   

Lacking authenticity

As people look back on their lives they see that their vocation or their dharma was not fulfilled. The biggest regret is that their dreams were laid to die before their bodies did. They buried their deepest desires, and so much of the human experience lay unfulfilled by following other people’s wishes for them. What their parents wanted them to do as a career, what they thought a role of a man in society should be, they did what others expected of them rather than what they wanted to do. Too much importance was given to peoples opinions rather than their unique dream.

The most common life regret is not living a life true to themselves. So much of the time, we do not have clarity on what we want because we are coerced to believe there is a linear path to life, our culture tells us the codes, our country puts in the program, and we follow blindly. We were not aligned to our truth, but to what others told us was the truth. 

At Behold Retreats, our ceremonies are with the intention of aligning people to their highest self, and your higher self knows intuitively what your mission on Earth is. Your higher self knows what is truly important to living a beautiful life. Plant medicines take off the facade and the layers of smaller self, the ego, to put us in touch with the authenticity of our being. 

Prioritizing work over family

Primarily for the male demographic, working too hard was a common theme when dying. Working too hard usually for somebody else’s dreams and thus living a mediocre existence. Working too hard and neglecting the children and wife at home. Working too hard and not having the time or mental space for passion projects and hobbies. Working too hard and not traveling the world. Working too hard, and placing career on a pedestal and everything else as second hand. 

We are rewarded for working hard, the term for it is toil glamor. Working hard makes us seem like effective productive members of society even if it makes us stressed or mentally ill or bad partners. In a society based upon profit engineering, we are conditioned to work, and the more we work, the more we are societally rewarded. People commonly regret working for existing, though female patients regret this less, as men are socialized to work hard.

They deeply regretted spending time on just their career and wished they spent more time with their family, with the people who care about them most. They wished they were able to break themselves free of negative patterns of caring about money and success over their loved ones. 

Not expressing feelings 

Another common regret was not expressing what they felt in the moment they felt it. Many people regretted the fact that when emotions arose within them, they suppressed or repressed them. Clinical psychologist Victoria Tarratt says that “Suppressing your emotions, whether it's anger, sadness, grief or frustration, can lead to physical stress on your body. The effect is the same, even if the core emotion differs. We know that it can affect blood pressure, memory and self-esteem.”

For many of the dying people, by bottling up their emotions, they began to resent people and develop mental illnesses related to their negative emotions that never got room to be fully expressed. In order to let an emotion go, we must first recognize that it exists and give it space. A negative emotion becomes more negative and builds inner tension when it is disregarded. A deep regret from dying patients is their relation to their own feelings. Our emotions are a compass into our very being.

At Behold Retreats, plant medicine combined with energy work and life coaching, allows our clients to express the emotions they have buried within them. Plant medicine such as ayahuasca, 5 MeO DMT, and psilocybin all work to clear out the energetic channels, where emotions stagnate when they are not expressed. There is a clearing out of dark matter, so positive emotions can flow freely. Do not wish you took better care of your inner world and emotion as an old person, do so now.


Communication with friends

As people were dying, they thought about the moments of love and beauty with old friends. In being so attached to their own lives, they did not give their friendships the energy or time they need to be nurtured and cultivated. Many people let some of their best friends slip away with the years. Dying patients miss their loved one and feel it was a mistake to not prioritize relationship and their golden friendships.

They wished that they had not spent so much time working or holding onto small trivialities, and put more effort into friendships. According to studies by William Chopik about personal relationships, there is research proving that keeping close friends is increasingly crucial to health and happiness as people age. From observing over 270,000 people in about 100 countries William Chopik concluded that both family relations and friendships are associated with a higher level of  health and happiness.

In situations of mental strain, or illness, our friendships provide a sense of safety and security in the world. Especially as we age and the years go by, friendships stand the test of time. People with longer, more consistent friendships, have an overall more joyful existence. 

At Behold Retreats, our plant medicine ceremonies have helped people reconnect to their beloved ones and let go of past resentments to build a happier future. We have had couples heal their wounds and come together in a stronger foundation of love. Plant medicine opens the heart space, and allows friendships and relationships to be sourced from the place of divine love. 

Wanting happiness

Many people stayed stuck for years in cycles and patterns that did not serve them or honor their livelihoods. They pretended to be content in the familiar, because the fear of change had stopped them from being truly happy. 

Many people realize that happiness was always accessible to them through their choices and deciding on their mood. But they carved their life in a way that was just coursing through it, rather than deciding for themselves. Happiness is always here, it is what we choose to give our focus to. The fears will always be here as well, but in living a fulfilling life we do not allow fear to drive the vehicle of our existence. Fear sits in the backseat. Because of living in a life of confined fear, people had missed opportunities and stuck to old patterns of making easy decisions and regret

Many dying people recount wanting the silliness and lightness in their life again, and wished they did not take themselves so seriously. Laughter is medicine. Joy is medicine. Happiness is our birthright. 

You can live a beautiful robust life

If you want to live a more authentic life true to your emotions and develop healthier relationships, plant medicine may be a crucial part of your spiritual journey in awakening. Journeys with ayahuasca, psilocybin, and 5MeO DMT are scientifically proven to lower rates of anxiety and depression, and improve overall life satisfaction. 

These plant medicines help to provide a deeper sense of clarity to align to truth and have more access to the joyful present moment. To choose a retreat that best serves your unique needs and spiritual path, book a discovery call with an expert below. 

Ready for a big shift?

Behold Retreats is the leading choice for safe, legal high-end retreats with 5-MeO-DMT (Bufo Alvarius), ayahuasca, and psilocybin.  Behold offers a 7-Week Coaching Program for optimized preparation and integration. Behold also offers both private and group retreat in Mexico, Portugal, Costa Rica, and the Netherlands. Reach out to request  a 1 on 1 discovery call.

Our team is composed of doctors, healers, professional therapists, life coaches, massage therapists, and yoga teachers. There is before and aftercare provided through integrative tools and expert knowledge, refined over hundreds of sessions. We help industry leading professionals tap into spirit and lead from a heart centered space.


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