Always Well Within

Calm Your Mind, Ease Your Heart, Embrace Your Inner Wisdom

Tag: Dying

How to Live and Die with Presence, Compassion & Grace

Letting Go w/ Love and Mindfulness | Terminal Illness

One of my readers asked me to write about living with terminal illness.

Since, I haven’t faced the shock of a terminal diagnosis myself, punishing rounds of treatment to forestall an ultimately incurable illness, or the emotional turbulence that insists upon coming along with a final prognosis, I wondered what I could write that wouldn’t seem intellectual, impersonal or trite.

At the same time, I think about impermanence often.  I’ve studied the Buddhist teachings on death and dying.  I’ve had moments I thought might be my last.  And I spent a year wavering around 84 pounds, not sure whether my weight would go up or down.

So perhaps something I share today may provide comfort, bring insight, or help you release attachment to this life, whether you are facing terminal illness or not. Because learning to let go is crucial to finding a deep abiding peace whatever your stage of life.

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How to Avoid the Top 5 Regrets of the Dying

White Lily

In her best-selling memoir, The Top Five Regrets of the Dying: A Life Transformed by the Dearly Departing, Bronnie Ware shares 5 disappointments people commonly express as they near death. See if any of these ring true for you:

  1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
  2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.
  3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
  4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
  5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.

Do one or more of these fit for you?  Then you know where to begin to avoid last minute regrets. And it would be good to start now because it takes time to change habits.

However, your regrets may have an entirely different flavor.  Fortunately, you don’t have to wait until you’re dying to know what you’ll regret. Just take an honest look at your life right now.

If you died this very moment, what would you regret? 

Grab a piece of paper and jot down what immediately comes to mind.  Then sit with it for awhile.

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