Effective Communication


Expressing Regrets

Regret is defined as a feeling of sadness over something you did or did not do. Many different structures can be used to express regret in English. Here are a few examples.

Wish / If Only

If only or I wish can be used to express regret.


I wish / if only + Past perfect

Sentence Examples:

  1. I wish I had offered more help to my grandmother.
  2. I wish I had given more time to my daughter
  3. If only I had eaten vegetables and fruits.
  4. If only I had studied this subject.
  5. If only my brother had gone to town this morning

A conditional sentence type 3 can also be used to express regret.


If + past perfect + would + have + past participle

Sentence Examples:

  1. If I had offered more help to my grandmother, I would have seen her now.
  2. If I had given more time to my daughter, I wouldn’t have cried now.
  3. If I had eaten vegetables and fruits, I wouldn’t have gotten sick now.
  4. If I had studied this subject, I would have surely passed it.
  5. If my brother had gone to town this morning, he would have gotten the supplies,

Should Have

Regret may also be expressed by using a modal should:


Should have + Past Participle

Sentence Examples:

  1. I should have woken up early in the morning for school.
  2. She should have eaten the fruits I bought for her.
  3. My mother should have gotten the money I transferred to her.
  4. I should have taken my sister to the carnival this afternoon.

I Regret…

You can express regret by using:


regret + Verb + ing

regret + Noun

Sentence Examples:

  1. She doesn’t regret bringing her baby to the hospital
  2. I regret the words I didn’t say to my mother when she was still with me.
  3. I don’t regret putting my food in storage.

Expressing Sympathy

The purpose of expressing sympathy is to express your sympathy and concern for the bereaved. You can express how much you will miss the deceased or share a happy memory. While it may be difficult to know what to say to someone who has lost a loved one, the most important message to convey is that you care about the bereaved person and are available to offer support.

These are the most common comforting phrases to express sympathy:

“My condolences.”

 “I’m sorry for your loss.”

 “You’re in my thoughts/I’m thinking of you.”

 “S/he was a wonderful person.”

“I will miss him/her.”

 “This must be so hard for you.”

When a dear one has departed, you can extend your condolences with kind words. You may feel that words are hollow and don’t do much to alleviate sorrow. However, your support can help the grieving family gain strength. If words seem empty, back them up with generous acts. Perhaps you could offer some assistance to the family. Or maybe they would appreciate your involvement in the funeral arrangements. You could even stay back after the ceremony to help the family get back to routine life.

Always remember, be kind in actions and in words.




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Gabrielle Love Acero

Gabrielle Love Acero loves to write in any form since she was still a little girl. Her writing skills were enhanced through reading books, articles, and informative materials such as Reader’s Digest. They are also her hobbies. She began her blog site at the age of 11. She wrote her experiences in life. With her experiences, she became a scriptwriter during her High School years. One of her movies that she directed and produced won 2nd place against 7 high school institutions (public and private) in the city where she is living. The interschool competition was hosted by Commission on Population (PopCom) – Region X. She puts effort into doing these things because it is her passion. She is one of the top of the class during her Elementary and High School years. She graduated as the Class Valedictorian in Junior High School. At the age of 9, Gabrielle Love Acero started participating and engaging in voluntary activities, especially at church. She entered the kids’ choir and joined “Sidewalk Saturday School (SSS)” as a volunteer. She taught indigenous children about God and His love for them in a certain area, including skit-playing and Bible-reading. With those experiences, she continued being a volunteer at heart until the present day. At the age of 13, she became a Worship leader in the church where she is currently attending since 2007. Her dedication, commitment, and love for God and His people made her become one of the assets of the church. She is one of the youth leaders. Gabrielle Love Acero is currently a junior student of Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Medical Biology at Xavier University – Ateneo de Cagayan, where she continues to work towards her dream of becoming a doctor in the near future. She is also involved in extracurricular organizations. She is currently the President of Xavier University Red Cross Youth (XU – RCY), where she plans, organizes, and implements humanitarian activities for the community with her team. Also, she is a 1st class Cadet Officer at Xavier University Philippine Air Force - Reserve Officer Training Corps (XU PAF ROTC), where she teaches basic military trainings based on her military training experiences. Also, she implies military leadership to her lower classes. Not despising her Biology degree, she put her efforts into her studies and get involved in Biophilic (Biology) Society activities with her colleagues. Many people are awed by her experiences and involvements, especially her time management skills, but with humility, she believes that her life is not her own, but with a purpose. Gabrielle Love Acero hopes to learn more about life and the field she is currently in. She is goal-oriented and exemplifies excellence in everything she does, not because of herself, but because of the greater One living inside her.