We tend to regret things we didn’t do over things we did do (quotes)

At the end, we tend to regret the things we didn’t do

  • At the end, regret only what you didn’t do. Charlie Rose
  • I regret the things I didn’t do, not what I did. Ingrid Bergman
  • The sins I regret the most are the one’s I didn’t commit. Elie Wiesel
  • The only things you regret are the things you didn’t do. Michael Curtiz
  • We regret the things we don’t do more than the things we do. Mark Twain
  • The only thing you live to regret are the risks you didn’t take. Zachary Scott
  • In life you don’t regret the things you do, you regret the things you don’t do. Hugh Jackman
  • Your regrets aren’t what you did, but what you didn’t do. So I take every opportunity. Cameron Diaz
  • She wonders if we feel more regret for the things we do or for the things we didn’t do. Deb Caletti
  • When you get older, it’s not about what you did that you regret, it’s what you didn’t do. Grace Slick
  • As you grow older, you’ll find the only things you regret are the things you didn’t do. Zachary Scott
  • You only regret what you don’t do! Go for it, live your dreams and enjoy it all! Diane von Furstenberg
  • You will have more regrets for the things you didn’t try than the ones you tried and didn’t succeed at. Jay Samit
  • The mistakes you regret the most in your life are the ones you didn’t commit when you had the chance. Helen Rowland
  • The follies which a man regrets the most in his life are those which he didn’t commit when he had the opportunity. Helen Rowland
  • On out deathbeds we’re not going to regret all the work we didn’t do. We’re going to regret all the sex we didn’t have. John Betjeman
  • Most of us fear reaching the end of our life regretting moments when we didn’t speak up, say I love you, or say I’m sorry. Taylor Swift
  • When you look at life retrospectively you rarely regret anything that you did, but you might regret things that you didn’t do. Jack Nicholson
  • Be bold and courageous. When you look back on your life, you’ll regret the things you didn’t do more than the ones you did. H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
  • I am told that you regret not what you did but what you didn’t do; and so that’s why I do everything, so as not to have any regrets. Quentin Crisp
  • In the end you regret less the things you believed that weren’t true than the things that never came true because you didn’t believe. Robert Breault
  • I think I don’t regret a single ‘excess’ of my responsive youth – I only regret, in my chilled age, certain occasions and possibilities I didn’t embrace. Henry James
  • The only things I regret, and the only things I’ll ever regret are things I didn’t do. In the end, that’s what we mourn. The paths we didn’t take. The people we didn’t touch. Scott Spencer
  • Sometimes you regret the things you do, but they’re over and done. Regretting the things you didn’t do is tougher because they’re still out there, haunting you with the what ifs. Elin Hilderbrand
  • I don’t want things that I regret in life, and things that I have not done – and I don’t want to at 80 years wake up, and tell myself: ‘Oh I was on top of my shape and skills and I didn’t do it.’ Georges St-Pierre
  • I never regret anything. I always said that when I’m old, I want to be sitting there regretting the things that I did and not the things that I didn’t do; and now I’m old, and I don’t regret anything! I had fun. I had fun, and I’m still having it. Michael Caine
  • Your greatest regret at the end of your life will be the lions you didn’t chase. You will look back longingly on risks not taken, opportunities not seized, and dreams not pursued. Stop running away from what scares you most and start chasing the God-ordained opportunities that cross your path. Mark Batterson
  • The only calibration that counts is how much heart people invest, how much they ignore their fears of being hurt or caught out or humiliated. And the only thing people regret is that they didn’t live boldly enough, that they didn’t invest enough heart, didn’t love enough. Nothing else really counts at all. Ted Hughes

Examples of people regretting what they didn’t do

  • The great regret of my life is that I didn’t have children. Charlie Rose
  • My one big regret is that I didn’t play on for 10 more years. George Best
  • My only regret in life is that I did not drink more wine. Ernest Hemingway
  • I don’t regret anything I’ve ever done. I only wish I could have done more. Mickey Rooney
  • My biggest regret is that I didn’t teach my two children how to speak Spanish. Henry Darrow
  • My biggest regret is that I didn’t listen to my intuition as it was yelling at me. Aras Baskauskas
  • I have only two regrets: I didn’t shoot Henry Clay and I didn’t hang John C. Calhoun.  Andrew Jackson
  • My only regret in life is that I didn’t spend as much time with my kids as I now wish I had. Perry Como
  • One regret I have: I didn’t get as much of the family history as I could have for the kids. Robert De Niro
  • My only regret is that we didn’t have more kids. I came from a family of four kids, but my wife and I just started too late. John Lithgow
  • Why didn’t I learn to treat everything like it was the last time. My greatest regret was how much I believed in the future. Jonathan Safran Foer
  • Pretty much I don’t regret anything that has happened in my life. One thing is I wish I could have spent more time with my mama and my pa. Kurupt
  • I think I don’t regret a single ‘excess’ of my responsive youth – I only regret, in my chilled age, certain occasions and possibilities I didn’t embrace. Henry James
  • My big regret is that my brother and I didn’t start doing what we did like, 10 years before. I feel like then we would have sold some records. We started pretty late – I was 27 when our first album came out. Eleanor Friedberger
  • Do you want to know what I most regret about my youth? That I didn’t dream more boldly and demand of myself more impossible things; for all one does in maturity is to carve in granite or porphyry the soap bubble one blew in youth! Oh to have dreamed harder! Lewis Mumford
  • We must know, as much as possible, in our beautiful art…what we are talking about and the only way to know is to have lived and loved and cursed and floundered and enjoyed and suffered. I think I don’t regret a single “excess” of my responsive youth. I only regret, in my chilled age, certain occasions and possibilities I didn’t embrace. Henry James
  • I don’t have that many days left,” he said as we sat together in the library. “Why would I want to spend them on matters of drainage and overdue accounts? I must husband my hours and spend every one of them wisely. I regret that I didn’t come to this realization until I reached fifty years of age. Calpurnia, you would do well to adopt such an attitude at an earlier age. Spend each of your allotted hours with care. Jacqueline Kelly

Maybe the truth is it’s easy to regret at times both what we did and didn’t do

  • Do it or don’t do it – you will regret both. Soren Kierkegaard

However, we must not allow ourselves to wallow in regret

  • You can’t regret the life you didn’t lead. Junot Diaz
  • Always regret the things you did do, never the things you didn’t. Dorothy Koomson
  • When I’m old I’m never going to say, I didn’t do this or, I regret that. I’m going to say, I don’t regret a damn thing. I came, I went, and I did it all. Kim Basinger
  • We need to forgive ourselves. For all the things we didn’t do. All the things we should have done. You can’t get stuck on the regrets of what should have happened. Mitch Albom
  • But there’s no way to avoid regret. Don’t let anybody tell you different. Regret is just life’s aftertaste. No matter what you choose, you’re gonna wonder if you shoulda done things different. I didn’t necessarily choose wrong. I just chose. And I lived with my choice, aftertaste and all. Amy Harmon