Student A and Student B give an entrance exam

Student A scores 93%

Student B scores 96%

The cutoff of the exam is 98%

Who do you think will feel worse at not making it?

Most of us will say Student B

When “technically” both should feel worse equally

Both didn’t make it

But Student B will feel “if only I had worked just a little bit more – I might have cleared it. What if?”

Now what if the cutoff was not shared with either

Now who would feel more regret?

Perhaps this time – it will be equal

This fascinates me

One’s regret increases if they are made aware of how close they were to the finish line

The distance between where you are and where you wanted to be – is inversely correlated to your regret

Closer the distance by which you missed it – more is the regret

Regret seems to have levels to it. Should it be so?