Bronnie Ware:Top five regrets and the dying. London Florist shares

Beloved Flower Lover,

Many people have been coming to us recently for get well flowers or sympathy flowers. We have had conversations about nursing homes. We have been honoured to be able to have conversations with lots of people going into and coming out  of hospital. Some have been children as young as three or four, some have been adults in their fifties, some have been much older. It was wonderful to be just hanging out with them as we decided on what sorts of flowers they might want to give to their loved ones. A lot of time like this led to finding the wonderful works of Bronnie Ware who talks about how to let go. We offered our flowers as a gentle form of comfort at this time.

grass cala lily and Mrs L.V.Rose vase

Bronnie, a palliative nurse who has counselled the dying in their last days has revealed the most common regrets we have at the end of our lives. And among the top, from men in particular, is ‘I wish I hadn’t worked so hard’.

Bronnie Ware is an Australian nurse who spent several years working in palliative care, caring for patients in the last 12 weeks of their lives. She recorded their dying epiphanies in a blog called Inspiration and Chai, which gathered so much attention that she put her observations into a book called The Top Five Regrets of the Dying.

Ware writes of the phenomenal clarity of vision that people gain at the end of their lives, and how we might learn from their wisdom. “When questioned about any regrets they had or anything they would do differently,” she says, “common themes surfaced again and again.”

Here are the top five regrets of the dying, as witnessed by Ware:

1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.

“This was the most common regret of all. When people realise that their life is almost over and look back clearly on it, it is easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled. Most people had not honoured even a half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they had made, or not made. Health brings a freedom very few realise, until they no longer have it.”

2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.

“This came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their children’s youth and their partner’s companionship. Women also spoke of this regret, but as most were from an older generation, many of the female patients had not been breadwinners. All of the men I nursed deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence.”

3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.

“Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with others. As a result, they settled for a mediocre existence and never became who they were truly capable of becoming. Many developed illnesses relating to the bitterness and resentment they carried as a result.”

4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.

“Often they would not truly realise the full benefits of old friends until their dying weeks and it was not always possible to track them down. Many had become so caught up in their own lives that they had let golden friendships slip by over the years. There were many deep regrets about not giving friendships the time and effort that they deserved. Everyone misses their friends when they are dying.”

5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.

“This is a surprisingly common one. Many did not realise until the end that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. The so-called ‘comfort’ of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their physical lives. Fear of change had them pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content, when deep within, they longed to laugh properly and have silliness in their life again.

Our team have talked about passing over a lot during the last two months. The care, the nurture, the protectiveness, the dignity and grace. A couple of the team have been talking about how they have been using this discussion to shift their feelings towards death, dying and transformation. One woman in particular says this,

“After going to sleep each night and weighing up our day I find ourselves asking our conscience many questions about how I lived our life that day.  I  redo or undo any situation where I may have done harm and where I may have been harmed. I ask for their forgiveness. I ask for my own forgiveness. I send them and myself feelings of love, and peace. I create those feelings using colours, smells, lovely scenes of nature and seeing them receiving lovely gifts that make them smile brightly. I see their future as happy in someway. I give myself a gift and then fall asleep in peace”

Mmmmmmmmmm we wondered, mmmmmmmmm

The Team

The London Flower Lover

About Thelondonflowerlover

Most busy people struggle with knowing how to really give themselves the time they deserve for genuine self caring. They can get so lost in their daily responsibilities that they lose themselves. They can get sick, tired, or just lose their way. We provide self caring and self loving packages that make use of the natural relaxing abilities of tools like flowers, and so much more, all designed to give a reliable, regular, rebalancing booster, to recharge their inner batteries so that they can enjoy life again. So welcome to this Floralicious universe, where you are the hero. Yes, that's right. We know that you have one clear desire. To be happy. We also know that something is stopping you from getting it. That is where we step in.a Things get done because you allow them to. We are your guide florists who provide you with answers for that stress. We do this using baby steps, providing you with relaxing and beautiful flowers to help you connect with your wellness. In our baby step plans we combine flowers, with a holistic appreciation of what it takes for you to be free of your challenge. In our opinion you are a hero, not a helpless victim. It is our belief that no one needs to struggle with stress if they are guided properly. We gently guide those who are stressed at work, at home or anywhere in between. We guide those who have declared that its time to stop dabbling with what they desire. And using those baby steps, we carefully guide those who are ready to experience a transformation. We would never deny the fact that flowers for your birthday, holidays and special occasions are amazing to send and receive. Those florist that specifically specialise in that line of floristry are fantastic. Yet what we are doing here points you in another direction. It's deeper. It points your attention inwards. To self. To boost yourself up on a REGULAR basis. That's a part of how we guide you through to become free of your stress. We invite you to see how life is breathing you and how you are part of life's nature. So what you uncover is really you discovering your own awesomeness. You learn how that is natural and not an exception. From that point of view , we are inviting you to let go of dabbling around . This process that aligns you with the truth of your nature,puts asleep those doubts that interfere with your desires.Putting asleep the elephant in the room and inviting you to discover your own process of moving from feeling stressed to calm, from feeling uncertainty to being confident, from feeling lonely to being in gratitude for the connections with others. We recognise what you want. We know. We have been there ourselves. We know how it feels and that all you need is a guide, to give you a plan to help you win the day. So we invite you to take the next baby step. If we don't call you to take action, then we are not helping you and life will only stay the same. It will reflect an unexplored set of feelings about your self that could harm your future. Lets put those to sleep and be focused on what is awake within you. We invite you to go forward and take the first tinniest baby step now. THE FLORALICIOUS PLAN Step 1 Sign up to The London Flower Lover blog. Open up your Floralicious conversation about relaxation, perception and flowers of all kinds. Step 2 Sign up for the empowerment plan that will work for you. At this stage are really ready to commit to your self caring. So choose your plan carefully. Each plan makes you available to the mechanics of your personal wholeness because you allow yourself to. No one is forcing you. Each plan gives you a reliable schedule of activity to bring your attention back to yourself. These plans use a mixture of techniques to awaken you . Repeatedly offered through story, gratitude journaling and more as you reflect the life you desire to breathe life into. By using flowers, you experience the boost of beautifully inspiring collections of flower designs. All you need to do is to align with that feeling. This is what makes this package a personal attunement to your natural aliveness and abundance! Step 3 You are now ready to use very specific flowers and self gifting to help you express yourself. You are ready to give yourself a licence to express yourself like never before. No longer intimidated by stress, you use flowers and self gifting to express the life that is breathing you. Your awesomeness is re-discovered, revealed and remembered. We invite you into your own Floralicious universe as you unwind, relax and enjoy happiness beyond stress.
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18 Responses to Bronnie Ware:Top five regrets and the dying. London Florist shares

  1. NinaRejoyces says:

    I’m happy that I read this. I can relate to three of these and I see that I need to make changes so that I won’t feel the same way at the end of my life.

    • Now we feel we have done our work! That is exactly why we shared this post. We give thanks for your very honest response. We too have been reflecting on it as a very intimate and gentle gift.As lovely as the flowers we work with. Thanks for popping by!

  2. This is ever so timely–at *all* times, really. There’s always someone in need around us! But at the moment, both my spouse and I have ailing parents and are surrounded by the questions of what kind of health interventions can or should be made, where all of the parents can or should live, what they desire and need most, and all of that. It means that the conversation with them is focused on quality of life issues, but also that we ourselves revisit more deeply our own questions on quality and end-of-life and what we long for most. May we all be as wise and caring as Ms Ware–and as graceful as a gentle floral artwork. Happy days to you,
    Kathryn

    • It’s sensitive topic that allows us to open ourselves up to ways that we can communicate care. We give thanks for the wonderful work of Ms Ware and being able to share that amongst the friends in our community. We are all taped into the principles of life and all its parts. Death and preparation for the transition is so important for us all. It transforms us all. Thank you for sharing your intimate thoughts so easily and choosing honestly to make the current days of your parents as loved filled as possible. By the way, the floral work we choose to share, was placed into a vase created by one of our teams elderly mother. So it was our opportunity to honour her too.

  3. nccmrm97 says:

    Reblogged this on Here Is What I Like and commented:
    Lessons to remember

  4. utesmile says:

    Reading this makes us more alive as we don’t want to have those regret, certainly not me…. so Live Now !

    • It’s a lovely piece of work that Bronnie has shared with us and so valuable for us all to consider. Thank you for reminding us that it’s about appreciating the life we already find ourselves with now. It’s beautiful where we are right now. We give thanks and thank you for popping by.

  5. totsymae1011 says:

    This is a bit sad, though eye-opening. Takes a mighty strong and courageous person to get these kinda confessions. Makes me wanna live more courageously and with intention.

    • Its a wonderful eye opener and offers us insights from those who are already standing at the finish line. It seems quite clear what our priorities are really. Thanks for popping by, good to hear from you.

  6. Ed says:

    Great post! It made me think and to be honest in the 48 years I’ve been on this earth II had mant regrets but I now live “Carpe Diem” and live for the future not the past..:-))

    • Your comments have many echoes for many readers. We can only imagine you count your blessings now and give thanks for the fact that those experiences have made you who you are today. This transforms the regret into what it is. A gift. We love you whatever your regret. You are a gifted photographer. Those regrets have given you a very special eye on things. So without those ‘war wounds’ you would not be who we have come to love today. Mwah from us all here at the team

  7. Important post this. Thanks.

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