I’d like to imagine that woman is me many, many years in the future.
If you imagine life as an old woman or man, you could understand so much. You could understand why the bad things happened to you. Or what you really wanted out of life. It’s kind of like asking yourself the questions, if you were at the end of your life what you would like people to say about you? If you are 50 now and you’re going to live to 80, you only have more 30 years? What will you do with that time?
It’s a wonderful exercise to help you figure out how life should be lived! It’s a way of living life in reverse.
If I could look back from a ripe old age, I will have:
1. …traveled the world, appreciated different cultures and landscapes.
2. …not been fearful and followed my passions and been creative! I need to get out of the box/comfort zone and experience life!
3. …been healthy and in good shape.
4. …mental clarity and be able to find my keys!
5. …been positive!
6. …helped people – those I know and people I don’t know.
7. And the most important thing… I will have loved the family and friends in my life – really gotten to know them and let them know me. Having great relationships is the thing you’ll think about most at the end of your life. I will have shown my children that they are totally and unconditionally loved.
I love this from Steve Job’s commencement speech to Stanford:
When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: ‘If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you’ll most certainly be right.’ It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: ‘If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?’ And whenever the answer has been ‘NO’ for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.
Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything – all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment of failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the rap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.”
You can’t live life in reverse. You don’t know if you’ll live a long life. You need to TRUST that everything is happening or not happening the way it’s supposed to. You need to start doing what you want to with the rest of your life today!
“Make today your masterpiece.” – John Wooden
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