How Would You Change Your Life Now If You Knew You Had Only One More Year To Live?

This is a gold image telling you to change your life now.

© oleschwander/


We all know that no one is going to live in this lifetime forever.  Sooner or later, we all need to face that, for better or worse, our lives here on earth will inevitably come to an end.  It’s kind of like the “pink elephant in the room” expression indicating that we are sometimes uncomfortable discussing the obvious.


Ironically, we tend to become most clear about what really matters in life at the end of our lives, not when we are born.  It really is a paradox:  Although we have to live life going forward, we can best understand life by looking back.  This fact is evident in that many people, when nearing death, are gifted with a phenomenal clairvoyant retroactive vision in which they totally comprehend the parts of life which were most important to them.


So how about if we reverse the sequence and tap into the wisdom that people have shared at the end of their lives and use these insights to guide us to live our lives to the fullest in present time?


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.


“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:

The most common of all was:


1. I wish I had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the one others expected of me. Most had not honored even half of their dreams. She found that they went to their death realizing that this was a choice they had made, and they deeply regretted having never really lived their dreams, or even part of them.


2. I wish that I hadn’t worked so hard. This came from many male patients she had nursed. They regretted missing their children growing up and the companionship of their spouse or partner. She primarily worked with elderly men because this generation didn’t have as many women who were breadwinners. All of the men deeply regretted spending so much time “on the treadmill” of work and giving in to the drive to get ahead. As I suspected, no one ever said on their death bed, “I only wish I had worked harder.”


3. I wish I had the courage to express my feelings. Many had repressed their own feelings to keep the peace, either with a spouse or family members. As a result, they settled for a mediocre life and didn’t realize their own potential. She said many had developed illnesses related to carrying the resentment and bitterness for so many years.


4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends. They would realize, too late, the importance of close friendships and in the last stages of life didn’t have the time to track them down to tell them how sorry they were. They were caught up in their own lives and let important friendships slip and realized too late how deeply they regretted this. She observed that love and relationships were ultimately the only thing that mattered to all of her patients in the end.


5. I wish I had let myself be happier. She said this was surprisingly common and that many did not realize that happiness is a choice they could have made all along. Because of their fear of change, they pretended to themselves and others that they were content. Deep inside they longed to really belly laugh and be silly and not care what others thought. On their deathbed, what others thought was not important.


I would add two more very important suggestions for living life to the fullest measure:


1. Forgive yourself for any ‘mistakes’ you think you have made.

When you forgive yourself, you can forgive everyone else, and nothing creates more peace than forgiveness.


2. Say, “I love you” to as many people as you can – Expressing your love is the greatest gift you can ever give to yourself and to everyone you meet.


Having read this blog, we have come full cycle back to the question in the beginning:


“How would you change your life now if you knew you had only one more year to live?


I welcome your insights.


Love and Light





Sandra Brossman is the author of The Power of Oneness, Live the Life You Choose.  To learn more about how you can align your life with spiritual truth, order the book at 


Living in Joy: What Does it Really Mean?

During a workshop a couple of years ago, someone asked me how I would define “joy.” The answer came through to me very clearly in that moment, and what I heard myself say is:


“Joy is the perpetual celebration of the perfection of every moment.”


This is an image of a joyful woman.

© Galushko Sergey / Shutterstock


Delivering that spontaneous insight was the easy part. LIVING in joy, I find, is not quite as easy. It is simple . . . . but not necessarily easy on a human level.


Being spiritually conscious beings, most of us have sent out visions and prayers to the Universe to provide us with the support, resources, and guidance to create the quality of life we choose.


My personal experience has been that all my prayers are being answered, but NOT always in the ways in which I might expect. For example, one thing that has become abundantly clear to me is that when we clearly affirm what we want in life, we may find that, rather than new things showing up, the prayer may be answered by things being taken away, such as the loss of a job, old friendships, a certain lifestyle, financial security, and the location of where we live.


It has taken me a while to realize that the Universe is not taking things away from us; rather the Universe is getting things out of our way that are obstructing the visions we are holding. In fact, we may feel that our lives are literally being turned upside down as we go through this “housecleaning” process. If we resist, it can be downright painful.


The only way to clear resistance is to surrender, and in order to surrender, we have to have complete faith, and in order to have complete faith, we have to accept that everything that we are experiencing – both the “good” and the “bad” – is in divine order. And when we accept that all is in divine order, we are able to celebrate the perfection of every moment.


And now we’ve come full-cyle – the celebration of the perfection of every moment is JOY.


This is an image of the Joy Intention Card.


This is the back of the Joy Intention Card.


Reinforce the message of Joy every time you see this card. You will be inspired to savor life through this powerful, blessed affirmation. See the Intention Card now.