Personal Development

105 Regret Quotes to Help You Let Go and Move on With Your Life

Regret Quotes to Help You Let Go and Move on With Your Life

Regret can get you stuck in the past.

In a memory that you keep turning and turning in your head. Without being able to move on.

In today’s post I’d like to share the 105 of the most powerful regret quotes. To help you to let go of that dark and heavy cloud hanging over your head.

I hope these timeless thoughts will help you to create a better today and go forward towards a happier, lighter and more successful tomorrow.

And if you want even more timeless wisdom and motivation then check out this post with quotes on inner peace and this one filled with Wednesday motivation quotes.

Helpful Regret Quotes

“One of the greatest regrets in life is being what others would want you to be, rather than being yourself.”
– Shannon L. Alder

“I’d rather regret the things I’ve done than regret the things I haven’t done.”
– Lucille Ball

“We must all suffer one of two things: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret or disappointment.”
– Jim Rohn

“Always do your best. Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse and regret.”
– Don Miguel Ruiz

“Make the most of your regrets; never smother your sorrow, but tend and cherish it till it comes to have a separate and integral interest. To regret deeply is to live afresh.”
– Henry David Thoreau

“If you are afraid to take a chance, take one anyway. What you don’t do can create the same regrets as the mistakes you make.”
– Iyanla Vanzant

“When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us.”
– Alexander Graham Bell

“There are two kinds of guilt: the kind that drowns you until you’re useless, and the kind that fires your soul to purpose.”
– Sabaa Tahir

“Stop fretting about past decisions. They have provided valuable wisdom. Go forward without fear or regret.”
– Paul Martens

“When a thing is done, it’s done. Don’t look back. Look forward to your next objective.”
– George C. Marshall

“We must all suffer from one of two pains: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret. The difference is discipline weighs ounces while regret weighs tons.”
– Jim Rohn

“First, imagine taking the potentially regret – producing path of inaction. Then imagine what the very best outcome would be were you to take this risk. By picturing both scenarios in advance, you can avoid the regret of what might have been.”
– Wayne Dyer

“There is no need to lament on the bygone failures, instead concentrate on things that you can change and let other things take their own course.”
– Robert Gallagher

“If you live long enough, you’ll make mistakes. But if you learn from them, you’ll be a better person. It’s how you handle adversity, not how it affects you. The main thing is never quit, never quit, never quit.”
– Bill Clinton

“Don’t live your life regretting yesterday. Live your life so tomorrow you won’t regret today.”
– Catherine Pulsifer

“When the past calls, let it go to voicemail. It has nothing new to say and you don’t have to listen. Would you really dig into yesterday’s garbage to make tonight’s meal? Do you dig into yesterday’s mental garbage to create today’s experiences?”
– Louise Hay

”Spend eighty percent of your time focusing on the opportunities of tomorrow rather than the problems of yesterday.”
– Brian Tracy

“I always try to do as much as I can do. I’m never a person that does not enough, because I’d regret not doing enough and think I probably could have done more. I probably go too far and have to reel myself back in, which works in some things, and other things it doesn’t work.”
– Tom Brady

“I’m living with every step. I can’t live with regret. The past is the past. I’m not worried about it. I can’t change it. I can’t fix it. It is what it is. I’m just living.”
– Ryan Sheckler

“The only things I regret, and the only things I’ll ever regret are things I didn’t do. In the end, that’s what we mourn. The paths we didn’t take. The people we didn’t touch.”
– Scott Spencer

“If you want to live your life in a creative way, as an artist, you have to not look back too much. You have to be willing to take whatever you’ve done and whoever you were and throw them away.”
– Steve Jobs

“One thing I feel clear about is that it’s important not to let your life live you. Otherwise, you end up at forty feeling you haven’t really lived. What have I learned? Perhaps to live now, so that at fifty I won’t look back upon my forties with regret.”
– Irvin D. Yalom

“I never regret anything. Because every little detail of your life is what made you into who you are in the end.”
– Drew Barrymore

Regret Quotes to Help You Move On

“Regret is an odd emotion because it comes only upon reflection. Regret lacks immediacy, and so its power seldom influences events when it could do some good.”
– William O’Rourke

“If you aren’t in the moment, you are either looking forward to uncertainty, or back to pain and regret.”
– Jim Carrey

“We all make mistakes, have struggles, and even regret things in our past. But you are not your mistakes, you are not your struggles, and you are here NOW with the power to shape your day and your future.”
– Steve Maraboli

“We should regret our mistakes and learn from them, but never carry them forward into the future with us.”
– Lucy Maud Montgomery

“Regrets are not inherited. Regrets are those elements of life that seek to undermine our enthusiasm and our willingness to assume a life filled with new discoveries and the attainment of goals. Let not your regrets be your undoing but instead your vehicle to learn from what did not work.”
– Byron Pulsifer

“Remorse is the poison of life.”
– Charlotte Bronte

“A man has cause for regret only when he sows and no one reaps.”
– Charles Goodyear

“Do not brood over your past mistakes and failures as this will only fill your mind with grief, regret and depression. Do not repeat them in the future.”
– Swami Sivananda

“We cannot always change what has happened to us, but we can change how we react and how we live in the future. Living with no regrets is living successfully.”
– Dr. Ellen Taricani

“I put my career in second place throughout both my marriages and it suffered. I don’t regret it. You make choices. If you want a good marriage, you must pay attention to that. If you want to be independent, go ahead. You can’t have it all.”
– Lauren Bacall

“Reflect upon your present blessings, of which every man has many-not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.”
– Charles Dickens

“Never regret anything from your past because one day, you’ll look back and thank it for hurting you so much that you decided to become a stronger human being.”
– Faith Star

“Many people choose to dwell on their failures. This leads to unnecessary worrying, regret, shame, and stress. Instead of dwelling on the past, you can reflect on your experiences and use negative situations as a learning experience.”
– Morris Pratt

“We all do things we desperately wish we could undo. Those regrets just become part of who we are, along with everything else. To spend time trying to change that, well, it’s like chasing clouds.”
– Libba Bray

“A couple of words that somebody said to somebody many years ago is not who they are today. You regret it, you apologize, you make it right, you move on and you live your life according to the values of what you have.”
– Diana Taylor

“I wouldn’t say I regret anything. I would say I just wish I did things better.”
– Greg Odeni

“Every day that we wake up is a good day. Every breath that we take is filled with hope for a better day. Every word that we speak is a chance to change what is bad into something good.”
– Walter Mosley

“I don’t dwell in the past; I don’t wallow in old events and emotions. I don’t waste time on regret. No use going over and over the details of what already happened.”
– Yanni

“My advice to other disabled people would be, concentrate on things your disability doesn’t prevent you doing well, and don’t regret the things it interferes with. Don’t be disabled in spirit as well as physically.”
– Stephen Hawking

“Wisdom is looking back at your life and realizing that every single event, person, place and idea was part of the perfected experience you needed to build your dream. Not one was a mistake.”
– John Federick Demartini

“Looking back, I have this to regret, that too often when I loved, I did not say so.”
– David Grayson

“The only calibration that counts is how much heart people invest, how much they ignore their fears of being hurt or caught out or humiliated. And the only thing people regret is that they didn’t live boldly enough, that they didn’t invest enough heart, didn’t love enough. Nothing else really counts at all.”’
– Ted Hughes

“You can never regret anything you do in life. You kind of have to learn the lesson from whatever the experience is and take it with you on your journey forward.”
– Aubrey O’Day

“Regrets only apply when we don’t learn from a situation. No sense looking back, look forward with new knowledge and no regret.”
– Catherine Pulsifer

“Don’t look back with tears, look forward with joy; and grab every bit of happiness you can. Don’t waste your life being afraid to try new things, and don’t be afraid of rejection, be afraid of rejecting what you know is right, in your heart.”
– Pippa Franks

Wise Regret Quotes

“At the end of your life, you will never regret not having passed one more test, not winning one more verdict or not closing one more deal. You will regret time not spent with a husband, a friend, a child, or a parent.”
– Barbara Bush

“If I’m sincere today, what does it matter if I regret it tomorrow?”
– José Saramago

“Don’t regret your mistakes. You’ll always make mistakes. The better you are, the less mistakes you make. The only way to get better is to thoroughly analyze your mistakes.”
– James Altucher

“Regret for the things we did can be tempered by time; it is regret for the things we did not do that is inconsolable.”
– Sydney J. Harris

“Don’t allow yourself to become one who, nearing death, regrets what you might have done if only you had taken a few risks. We each have a purpose in life.”
– Gillian Stokes

“Nobody gets to live life backward. Look ahead, that is where your future lies.”
– Ann Landers

“I made decisions that I regret, and I took them as learning experiences… I’m human, not perfect, like anybody else.”
– Queen Latifah

“Regret is the worst human emotion. If you took another road, you might have fallen off a cliff. I’m content.”
– William Shatner

“Look not mournfully into the past, it comes not back again. Wisely improve the present, it is thine. Go forth to meet the shadowy future without fear and with a manly heart.”
– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

“Listen earnestly to anything your children want to tell you, no matter what. If you don’t listen eagerly to the little stuff when they are little, they won’t tell you the big stuff when they are big, because to them all of it has always been big stuff.”
– Catherine M. Wallace

“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

“Regret is a tough but fair teacher. To live without regret is to believe you have nothing to learn, no amends to make, and no opportunity to be braver with your life.”
– Brené Brown

“The longer our trail of regrets, the more we tend to value the importance of making wise decisions.”
– Bob Santos

“Never regret anything you have done with a sincere affection; nothing is lost that is born of the heart.”
– Basil Rathbone

“The past is a great place and I don’t want to erase it or to regret it, but I don’t want to be its prisoner either.”
– Mick Jagger

“The future is full of endless possibilities. Stop looking back and forge your dreams. The only person you should strive to be better than, is the person you were yesterday.”
– Mattu Mullins

“Life is too short, time is too precious, and the stakes are too high to dwell on what might have been.”
– Hillary Clinton

“The feelings that hurt most, the emotions that sting most, are those that are absurd – The longing for impossible things, precisely because they are impossible; nostalgia for what never was; the desire for what could have been; regret over not being someone else; dissatisfaction with the world’s existence. All these half-tones of the soul’s consciousness create in us a painful landscape, an eternal sunset of what we are.”
– Fernando Pessoa

“Looking back, I have this to regret, that too often when I loved, I did not say so.”
– Ray Stannard Baker

Insightful Regret Quotes

“When we grow old, there can only be one regret – not to have given enough of ourselves.”
– Eleonora Duse

“Have no regrets. The elderly usually don’t have regrets for what we did, but rather for things we did not do. The only people who fear death are those with regrets. Of all the words of mice and men, the saddest are, ‘It might have been.’”
– Kurt Vonnegut

“You can’t start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading the last one.”
– Suzy Kassem

“The most regretful people on earth are those who felt the call to creative work, who felt their own creative power restive and uprising, and gave to it neither power nor time.”
– Mary Oliver

“They say you should not suffer through the past. You should be able to wear it like a loose garment, take it off and let it drop.”
– Eva Jessye

“Did you know the #1 regret that people have on their death bed is that they wish they’d had the courage to live a life true to themselves, and not what others expected of them?”
– Rachel Rofe

“Still, to my mind he overdid it, and I’d have liked to have a chance of explaining to him, in a quite friendly, almost affectionate way, that I have never been able really to regret anything in all my life. I’ve always been far too much absorbed in the present moment, or the immediate future, to think back.”
– Albert Camus

“I see it all perfectly; there are two possible situations – one can either do this or that. My honest opinion and my friendly advice is this: do it or do not do it – you will regret both .”
– Soren Kierkegaard

“Your children make it impossible to regret your past. They’re its finest fruits. Sometimes the only ones.”
– Anna Quindlen

“I don’t regret what I’ve been through. I’ve had ups and downs, super highs and some really low lows. I’ve been so blessed that I could never say, ‘I wish this didn’t happen.’ It’s part of who I am. There’s nothing in my life that’s so ugh.”
– Jennifer Lopez

“In history as in human life, regret does not bring back a lost moment and a thousand years will not recover something lost in a single hour.”
– Stefan Zweig

“I would much rather have regrets about not doing what people said, than regretting not doing what my heart led me to and wondering what life had been like if I’d just been myself.”
– Brittany Renee

“Heartbreak could be lived with if it weren’t accompanied by regret.”
– Laura Kasischke

“The only thing I regret about my past is the length of it. If I had to live my life again I’d make all the same mistakes – only sooner.”
– Tallulah Bankhead

“Worrying about past regrets does nothing to change the past. Your future is where your focus should be.”
– Catherine Pulsifer

“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

Short Regret Quotes

“Of all the words of mice and men, the saddest are, “It might have been.”
– Kurt Vonnegut

“I often regret that I have spoken; never that I have been silent.”
– Publilius Syrus

“A man is not old until regrets take the place of dreams.”
– John Barrymore

“There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind.”
– C.S. Lewis

“Regret is mostly caused by not having done anything.”
– Charles Bukowski

“Maybe all one can do is hope to end up with the right regrets.”
– Arthur Miller

“Living with regrets was like driving a car that only moved in reverse.”
– Jodi Picoult

“If only. Those must be the two saddest words in the world.”
– Mercedes Lackey

“Don’t waste your time in anger, regrets, worries, and grudges. Life is too short to be unhappy.”
– Roy T. Bennett

“Don’t regret yesterday. Be in this moment, in today. And remember that you make your tomorrow.”
– Unknown

“Never look back unless you are planning to go that way.”
– Henry David Thoreau

“No space of regret can make amends for one life’s opportunity misused!”
– Charles Dickens

“It’s better to look ahead and prepare, than to look back and regret.”
– Jackie Joyner-Kersee

“The real affliction of old age is remorse.”
– Cesare Pavese

“Don’t look back unless it’s a good view.”
– Tupac Shakur

“I’m trying to make myself better. But I don’t regret anything that I’ve gone through, because it makes me who I am.”
– Nick Carter

“The beginning of compunction is the beginning of a new life.”
– George Eliot

“Often regret is very false and displaced, and imagines the past to be totally other than it was.”
– John O’Donohue

“One doesn’t recognize the really important moments in one’s life until it’s too late.”
– Agatha Christie

“Regret is like tears seeping through closed eyelids.”
– Galway Kinnell

“The bitterest tears shed over graves are for words left unsaid and deeds left undone.”
– Harriet Beecher Stowe

“Never regret. If it’s good, it’s wonderful. If it’s bad, it’s experience.”
– Victoria Holt

“Never regret anything that made you smile.”
– Mark Twain

“‘Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.”
– Alfred Lord Tennyson

If you liked these regret quotes then share them with a friend that could make good use of them on social media or via email.

Want even more inspiration and helpful thoughts? Check out this post with quotes on dealing with ungrateful people and also this one with quotes on handling haters. Plus, this post on broken trust and how to move on from that.

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