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Talking about Regrets

Janet: Martin, when you look back on your life, do you have any regrets?

Martin: Of course, I do. I have lots of regrets such as marrying at a very young age, my

marriage ending in divorce and not going to university. But I try not to think them because

it’s a slippery slope to feelings of failure and doubt...

Janet: How do you manage not to think about them?

Martin: Well, I think we just need to accept that there are things that happen in our lives that

are beyond our control. They can be the result of other people’s actions, misfortune, and

unforeseen circumstances... Nobody is perfect – we’re only human after all!

Janet: I think men interpret life in a more logical way than women. Sometimes, I get so

caught up thinking about my mistakes that I feel completely overwhelmed.

Martin: Really? I think it’s strange that people are so afraid of regret because it’s an

inevitable part of life. Nowadays especially, it’s exceedingly difficult to make good choices

all the time. Regret is something we can’t avoid - we just need to learn to handle it in a

positive way.

Janet: So, you think it’s just part of our lives and we shouldn’t dwell on it?

Martin: Absolutely! We all make mistakes in life, but the important thing is that we learn

from them and use them to make better choices in the future.

Janet: I’ve learned more from you in the last few minutes than I have in any of my

counselling sessions! We should chat more often, Martin!

Cups of Coffee
Talking about Regrets


Phrasal verb
Example sentence
To let down someone

To make someone disappointed when you have not fulfilled a promise.

She promised that she would be there but she let me down.

To break down

1.  To become very upset.

2.  When something stops working

1.  She broke down when she opened her results.

2.  The lift broke down.

To bring somebody/something down

1.  To make someone lose their powerful position.

2. To make something end.

1.  He brought his boss down by exposing personal emails.

2.  The rise in export prices could bring the hospitality industry down.

To bottle something up

To refuse to talk about things when someone is worried or upset.

After his father passed away, he bottled his emotions up and wouldn’t talk to anyone.

To get something across

To make someone believe or understand something

He tried to get his point across but his manager wouldn’t listen.

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