How To Handle Financial Regrets and What Ifs (Episode 167)

Updated: September 16, 2023

Listen to this episode:

What you’ll hear in this episode:

Regrets are part of life. Whether they stem from decisions we made, opportunities we missed, or paths we didn’t take, regrets can weigh heavily on our hearts.

In this episode, we talked about how to handle regret, financial or otherwise. I started by sharing a post I read from The Artidote Facebook Page:

Just because things could’ve been different doesn’t mean they would’ve been better—a gentle reminder next time you catch yourself wondering “What if…”

Reflecting upon this made me think about several things, particularly:

  • Counterfactual Thinking and Regret
  • Hindsight Bias and Perception of Outcomes
  • The Nature of Unpredictability
  • Contentment and Acceptance
  • The Importance of Learning from the Past
  • Personal Growth and Adaptability

Ultimately, the episode hopes to help people find peace with the past.

Excerpts and Highlights

  • Counterfactual thinking is the tendency to imagine alternative outcomes to past events and often involves contemplating “what if” scenarios. But dwelling on these imagined scenarios can sometimes detract from appreciating what one has in the present.
  • The tendency to believe that a different choice would have surely led to a better outcome might not be accurate due to the complexities of decision-making and unforeseeable variables.
  • Events are always shaped by chance and randomness.
  • While indulging in excessive “what if” thinking might not be productive, there’s value in reflecting on past decisions to learn and grow.
  • Focus on self-improvement rather than dwelling on missed opportunities.
  • Adapting and learning from adversity can be just as valuable as achieving success.

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