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Life Lessons from Ferris Bueller

May 21, 2024

My wife Laura and I have different tastes in movies.

Her taste is more sophisticated, while I am always down for a classic comedy.

Recently, I talked her into watching Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. If you don’t know this movie, it’s an 80’s classic about a slick-talking, trouble-maker named Ferris Bueller who fakes being sick, so he can skip school, sneak out of the house, and hang out with his best friend and his girlfriend. 

Many may think this movie doesn’t have a lot of depth. But in the midst of many ridiculous experiences, there’s one line that really stands out. Ferris turns to his more cautious friend and says, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you might miss it.” 

You might be a recent college graduate, a young mom, or a retired businessman, but regardless of your age and stage, we can all take Ferris’s advice to stop and enjoy where we are today. 

I’m approaching a milestone birthday (more on that next week), so I’m keenly aware that life is moving fast. Today, I want to challenge you to embrace the life you have been given.

Author Bronnie Ware worked in palliative care for many years and cared for patients in their final weeks and days of life. When she asked them if they had any regrets, there were a variety of answers, but here were the five most repeated:

1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.
3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.

Don’t get to the end of your life with a whole bunch of regrets.

Take some advice from an unlikely source: Ferris Bueller. 

Look around, be yourself, enjoy your family and friends, and embrace where you are today.


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