An aphorism is nothing else but the slightest
form of writing raised to the highest level of expressive communication. Carl William Brown





My one regret in life is that I'm not someone else.


Woody Allen (1935-, American director, screenwriter, actor, comedian)


I regret the passing of the studio system. I was very appreciative of it because I had no talent.


Lucille Ball (1911-1989, American actress, producer)


I have no regrets, I wouldn't have lived my life the way I did if I was going to worry about what people were going to say.


Ingrid Bergman (1915-1982, Swedish-born American screen, stage actress)


Regret for time wasted can become a power for good in the time that remains, if we will only stop the waste and the idle, useless regretting.


Arthur Brisbane (American editor, columnist)


The most painful thing to experience is not defeat but regret.


Leo Buscaglia (1924-1998, American expert on love, lecturer, author)


I believe that he was really sorry that people would not believe he was sorry that he was not more sorry.


Samuel Butler (1612-1680, British poet, satirist)


The best of prophets of the future is the past.


Lord Byron (1788-1824, British poet)

Source: Letter, Jan. 28, 1821


Never look for the birds of this year in the nests of the last.


Miguel De Cervantes (1547-1616, Spanish novelist, dramatist, poet)


One doesn't recognize the really important moments in one's life until it's too late.


Agatha Christie (1891-1976, British mystery writer)


The horror of that moment, the King went on, "I shall never forget." "You will, though," the Queen said, "if you don't make a memorandum of it."


Lewis Carroll (1832-1898, British writer, mathematician)


Remorse, the fatal egg that pleasure laid.


William Cowper (1731-1800, British poet)


It's the things I might have said that fester.


Clemence Dane (1888-1965, British playwright, novelist)


Regrets are the natural property of gray hairs.


Charles Dickens (1812-1870, British novelist)


You'll seldom experience regret for anything that you've done. It is what you haven't done that will torment you. The message, therefore, is clear. Do it! Develop an appreciation for the present moment. Seize every second of your life and savor it. Value your present moments. Using them up in any self-defeating ways means you've lost them forever.


Wayne Dyer (1940-, American  psychotherapist, author, lecturer)

Author's website:


People seldom do what they believe in. They do what is convenient, then repent.


Bob Dylan (1941-, American musician, singer, songwriter)


Footfalls echo in the memory down the passage which we did not take towards the door we never opened into the rose-garden.


T. S. Eliot (1888-1965, American-born British poet, critic)


The past will not tell us what we ought to do, but... what we ought to avoid.


Jose Ortega Y Gasset (1883-1955, Spanish essayist, philosopher)


The biggest thing in today's sorrow is the memory of yesterday's joy.


Kahlil Gibran (1883-1931, Lebanese poet, novelist)


A great source of calamity lies in regret and anticipation; therefore a person is wise who thinks of the present alone, regardless of the past or future.


Oliver Goldsmith (1728-1774, Anglo-Irish author, poet, playwright)


Nobody who ever gave his best, regretted it.


George Halas (1895-1983, American football coach)


Regret for the things we did can be tempered by time; it is regret for the things we did not do that is inconsolable.


Sidney J. Harris (1917-, American journalist)


I have many regrets, and I'm sure everyone does. The stupid things you do, you regret… if you have any sense, and if you don't regret them, maybe you're stupid.


Katharine Hepburn (1907-2003, American actress, writer)


I have always found that each step we take in life is to be regretted -- if we once begin to wonder how many other steps might have been possible.


John Oliver Hobbes


I have no regrets because I know I did my best -- all I could do.


Midori Ito (1969-, Japanese figure skater)


We rarely repent of having eaten too little.


Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826, American President (3rd))


Always repenting of wrongs done will never bring my heart to rest.


Chi K'ang


It's not what your are, it's what you don't become that hurts.


Oscar Levant (1906-1972, American pianist, actor)


Nostalgia: When you find the present tense and past perfect.


The Lion


Let the dead Past bury its dead!


Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1819-1892, American poet)


Go to the effort. Invest the time. Write the letter. Make the apology. Take the trip. Purchase the gift. Do it. The seized opportunity renders joy. The neglected brings regret.


Max L. Lucado (American author, "The Eye Of The Storm")


Go to the effort. Invest the time. Write the letter. Make the apology. Take the trip. Purchase the gift. Do it. The seized opportunity renders joy. The neglected brings regret.


Max L. Lucado (American author, "The Eye Of The Storm")


Make it a rule of life never to regret and never to look back. Regret is an appalling waste of energy; you can't build on it; it's only good for wallowing in.


Katherine Mansfield (1888-1923, New Zealand-born British author)


Maybe all one can do is hope to end up with the right regrets.


Arthur Miller (1915-, American dramatist)


I demolish my bridges behind me... then there is no choice but forward.


Firdtjof Nansen


The worst thing you can do is to try to cling to something that's gone, or to recreate it.


Johnette Napolitano


Judgement comes from experience, and great judgement comes from bad experience.


Robert Packwood


The past should be culled like a box of fresh strawberries, rinsed of debris, sweetened judiciously and served in small portions, not very often.


Laura Palmer


There is no man, however wise, who has not at some period of his youth said things, or lived in a way the consciousness of which is so unpleasant to him in later life that he would gladly, if he could, expunge it from his memory.


Marcel Proust (1871-1922, French novelist)


All of the Earth's treasures can't bring back a lost moment.


French Proverb (Sayings of French origin)


Better by far you should forget and smile, than that you should remember and be sad.


Christina Rosetti


The follies which a man regrets most are those which he didn't commit when he had the opportunity.


Helen Rowland (1875-1950, American journalist)


Let's not burden our remembrance with a heaviness that's gone.


William Shakespeare (1564-1616, British poet, playwright, actor)


People have to face regrets. Becoming mature means learning to accept what you cannot change, facing unresolved sorrows and learning to love life as it really happens, not as you would have it happen. When someone attaches unkindness to criticism, she's angry. Angry people need to criticize as an outlet for their anger. That's why you must reject unkind criticism. Unkind criticism is never part of a meaningful critique of you. Its purpose is not to teach or to help, its purpose is to punish. Life isn't supposed to be an all or  nothing battle between misery and bliss. Life isn't supposed to be a battle at all. And when it comes to happiness, well, sometimes life is just okay, sometimes it's comfortable, sometimes wonderful, sometimes boring, sometimes unpleasant. When your day's not perfect, it's not a failure or a terrible loss. It's just another day.


Barbara Sher (American author of "I Could Do Anything If I Only Knew What It Was")


If we always look back, we lose sight of what's ahead.


Justin Sims


When the past has taught us that we have more within us than we have ever used, our prayer is a cry to the divine to come to us and fill us with its power.


Rudolph Steiner


The bitterest tears shed over graves are for words left unsaid and deeds left undone.


Harriet Beecher Stowe (1811-1896, American novelist, antislavery campaigner)


Make the most of your regrets; never smother your sorrow, but tend and cherish it till it come to have a separate and integral interest. To regret deeply is to live afresh.


Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862, American essayist, poet, naturalist)


To regret deeply is to live afresh.


Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862, American essayist, poet, naturalist)


A few moments of misplaced values can mean a lifetime of regret.


Author Unknown


Only in your imagination can you revise.


Fay Wray (1907-, American screen actor)


The worst thing that one can do is not try, to be aware of what one wants and not give in to it, to spend years in silent hurt wondering if something could have materialized -- and never knowing.


David Viscott (1938-, American author, speaker, trainer)


We can't afford to waste tears on might-have-beens. We need to turn the tears into sweat that can take us to what can be.


Denis Waitley (1933-, American author, speaker, trainer, peak performance expert)

Author's website:


Tomorrow hopes we have learned something from yesterday.


John Wayne


The only use of a knowledge of the past is to equip us for the present.


Alfred North Whitehead (1861-1947, British mathematician, philosopher)


For of all sad words of tongue or pen, the saddest are these: "It might have been!"


John Greenleaf Whittier (1807-1892, American poet, reformer, author)


Hindsight is always twenty-twenty.


Billy Wilder (1906-2002, American film director)


If you’re going to do something tonight that you'll be sorry for in the morning, sleep late.


Henny Youngman (1906-1998, American actor, comedian)


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