Life regrets and life satisfaction in mature adults

Volume 2 - Issue 2
Olivia Pethtel Yiwei Chen
Pages: 106-118 Download Count : 7308 View Count: 4001 Facebook Share on Google+ Save to Zotero Save to Mendeley


Individuals have to make many decisions throughout the lifespan. This is very likely to yield some decision outcomes that will leave a decision-maker with the feeling of regret, which can ultimately affect an individual’s well-being. The present study demonstrated the psychometric properties of a newly developed scale, the Life Regrets Scale. One hundred and nineteen mature adults between the ages of 39 and 76 completed the Life Regrets Scale. To check the validity of the life regrets scale, participants completed scales assessing the following constructs: life satisfaction, decision outcomes, and positive and negative affect. In addition, participants completed scales assessing dispositional factors including the big 5 personality factors and emotion regulation strategies. It was positively correlated with regret tendency and negative affect and negatively correlated with life satisfaction, positive affect, and decision outcomes. Dispositional variables, including personality factors, emotion regulation strategies, and affect, accounted for a significant amount of variance in predicting life satisfaction. However, life regrets uniquely accounted for variance in life satisfaction more so than dispositional factors. Results suggest that life regrets uniquely contributes to an individual’s well-being. The life regrets scale can be a useful tool for quickly assessing the intensity of life regrets that may contribute to an individual’s life satisfaction.


  • Decision-making
  • well-being
  • aging
  • emotion
  • regret
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