Regret starts off as a seed and slowly grows as time ticks by. Our regrets of chances not taken last week are mere saplings, most of which would die. But the seeds of regret from 10 years ago take root and start growing into trees that are hard to uproot.
Fear starts off as a monster, and shrinks as we engage with it. We fear the chances that lie ahead of us. We fear unlikely consequences, unknown risk and anonymous enemies. The more we unpack that fear, understand the risks and evaluate the consequences, the more the fear itself shrinks – form a monster to a mere mouse.
Regret and fear are two sides of the same coin, and they grow in opposite directions. Their common enemy, though, is engagement.