Broker Check


Unacceptable Regrets

| December 28, 2015
Life Planning

We live our lives and are encouraged to live life fully and to not have regrets. Though in fact, that word itself establishes a negative frame of mind. However, we have found that this same word can produce a positive outcome  with the addition of a simple adjective: unacceptable.

At the end of your life, what would be a regret that you absolutely do not want to have?

An Unacceptable Regret is just this: a regret that you absolutely do not want to have. So today’s article is a little different than most. If you don’t have a lot of time right now, save this for later. If you do, grab a pencil. I have a few questions to help you explore the Unacceptable Regrets in your life.

First, think about this question again and write down any and all things that come to mind. Just leave some space under each of these.

At the end of your life, what would be a regret that you absolutely do not want to have?

Then, answer the following questions for each of these regrets:

  • What would be so unacceptable to you about this regret?
  • What are you doing, or not doing, right now that might bring about this regret?
  • What has to happen as soon as possible to avoid this possibility?
  • By what specific date, at the latest, does this have to change?
  • What measurable achievement or result would convince you that you won’t have this regret?
  • Ninety days from now, what progress will you have made regarding this achievement or result?
  • What is the first action you are going to take?

I have found this is a great way to set goals, not only life goals, but yearly goals, quarterly goals, monthly, weekly, daily, etc.-whether they are personal goals or business goals. Merely change up the question a little.

e.g.  At the end of the year, what would be a regret that you absolutely do not want to have about your career?

Spend some time with this. I promise you will find it worthwhile and very fulfilling. When you complete this exercise, think on these two questions:

  • What is the biggest insight you’ve had from focusing on this topic?
  • What single improvement is immediately going to occur as a result of this focus?

When I first completed this exercise for myself, I could immediately pinpoint the biggest priorities in every aspect of my life. Moreover, it gave me clear insight as to where I should spend my time and how to spend it-both at work and in my personal life. It was truly amazing how this negative word became a tool to inspire and motivate me.

Life Planning is about so much more than money, investments, insurance, taxes, debt, etc. Those are just the tools to make it work. Life Planning is about living Life on purpose, which means no regrets!