I’ve always thought that most people fall into one of 2 categories: A) those who carefully think through everything they do in life, in advance (these people frequently pride themselves on their good judgment), B) those who occasionally (or more than occasionally) throw caution to the wind (these people frequently remind themselves that life is short and they’d rather regret the things they’ve done than the things they haven’t done). Sure, there’s some crossover between group A and group B, and some people don’t really fit into either group. Generalizations never work perfectly, but they’re good for storytelling and the like.
There’s no doubt that I’m clearly in group B. As much as I overthink things, and I do overthink just about everything, I’m a caution to the wind kinda gal.
Especially when it comes to relationships. I’ve actually said, repeatedly, that I don’t want to look back on my life and wonder, ‘what if.’ I’d rather know. And I have the scars to show for it.
Which is why I was intrigued by this post in Jezebel (which picked up the story from Mindhacks) about a study that claims to show that Americans have more regrets about love than any other subject. I say ‘claims’ because it was a tiny sample size and an odd study. They then differentiated between regrets based on action and inaction. The former (regrets based on things you’ve done) seem to be more common and more intense. Whereas the latter (regrets based on inaction) seem to last longer.
So I guess I’m in the majority here, for once? There are lots of caution to the wind folks? Whoulda thunk it.
I guess I’m not really surprised. For all the shit I take for my poor judgment, most people would rather know. Is he the right guy for me? Should I give him one more chance? What if I’m more patient? What if he’s really changed? And the only way to really know is to TRY. To throw caution to the wind, stick your neck out and try.
Hmm, I’m thinking the metaphor police might come and take me away.
Anyway…what I find MOST interesting about this is that the people who choose not to act, the good judgment folks, they hold on to their regret the longest. Which is exactly what I’d like to avoid. In the end, though, maybe this is a damned if you do, damned if you don’t thing.
Tags: jezebel, judgment