Rating: 3.5 stars

Everybody has regrets, Daniel H. Pink explains in The Power of Regret. They’re a universal and healthy part of being human. And understanding how regret works can help us make smarter decisions, perform better at work and school, and bring greater meaning to our lives.

Drawing on research in social psychology, neuroscience, and biology, Pink debunks the myth of the “no regrets” philosophy of life. And using the largest sampling of American attitudes about regret ever conducted as well as his own World Regret Survey–which has collected regrets from more than 15,000 people in 105 countries–he lays out the four core regrets that each of us has. These deep regrets offer compelling insights into how we live and how we can find a better path forward.

As he did in his bestsellers Drive, When, and A Whole New Mind, Pink lays out a dynamic new way of thinking about regret and frames his ideas in ways that are clear, accessible, and pragmatic. Packed with true stories of people’s regrets as well as practical takeaways for reimagining regret as a positive force, The Power of Regret shows how we can live richer, more engaged lives.

This book about regret and its power is an unforgettable read. Jammed full of knowledge that takes more than one sitting to digest, Daniel Pink is very insightful and knowledgeable when it comes to discussing regret in human life and the role each of us must play with it. From discussing the four distinct types of regret we each experience to how to go about turning our regretful actions into a positive direction, Pink uses his research and knowledge to transform regret into a powerfully positive force we can harness to our advantage. As a reader, I found that Pink transformed my understanding of what regret truly is into something that can be more insightful than I initially expected.

I found the way regret was discussed in each chapter insightful. I particularly enjoyed how he brought about discussing all the different types of regret a person can have by providing real-life examples. While most of the examples provided were things I couldn’t particularly relate to, I feel like the context of the regrets discussed made sense to me. The research he used to back up his perspective was interesting to read as it helped tie any potential loose ends together.

What I didn’t enjoy when reading The Power of Regret, however, is that how to deal with your own regrets isn’t fully discussed. Yes, he mentioned a couple helpful pieces of information regarding what you can do when handling a regret you have. However, he never fully explained this information to you as the reader. If anything, this book covers the subject of dealing with your own regrets for a short amount of time in comparison to the discussion had about all the different types of regret you can experience.

I also would’ve loved to have gotten more information with regards to how dealing with your own regrets benefits you. I feel like this would’ve been an interesting topic to have brought up through this book because then as a reader, I can understand how powerful dealing with my own regrets could truly be. Also would’ve loved to see Pink discuss some of his own personal regrets too. Not because I want to know all about his personal life, but to see how he handled some of the biggest regrets in his life using the knowledge he’s shared in this book. Overall, I enjoyed reading The Power of Regret. I found the overall information gleamed within its pages very insightful and something everyone could learn a little bit from. It made me reflect on some of my own life choices I’ve made and think about what would’ve happened if I’d done some things a little differently.