How To Balance Living Today and Potentially Dying Tomorrow
Life is too short so do it now, spend it all, and say it loud, but also don’t just in case you live tomorrow…
Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot more about the tangibility, beauty, blessing, and (maybe most importantly) brevity of life. And although I’m trying to be more grateful for every breath I take while experiencing the hills and valleys of life... it’s effing hard.
The (more or less) Universally Forgotten Simple Truth
I’ve been contemplating this paradox, which I never consciously or critically addressed before. I mean, like many of us 20-something year olds, I had this ‘I get that death is a real thing but I’m basically invincible and most definitely have at least another 60 years coming my way’ mentality #GuiltyAsCharged; BUT after losing a close family member so suddenly and unpredictably, all of that has changed for me – Unfortunately, it took something being taken, for me to realistically consider a simple truth: mortality.
This paradox (that I made up) suggests that life’s brevity doesn’t allow thinking, doubt, or second guessing (#GrabLifeByTheB@ll$), while also proposing that it might be a good idea to think about the future just in case you live to see it.
The Unfortunate Truth
None of us are invincible. Death is a thing – I mean, we’re characterized as ‘mortal beings’ for a reason! Now, I don’t want to scare you – no, no! My hope is to remind you of the fragility (not sure that’s a word, but there you have it) of life and inspire you to use that knowledge as power; Because although we are all sick enough to die, we must realize that we have this moment to live.
First and foremost: Fear
Don’t let fear of failure (or death) keep you from success - 9 times out of 10 you are the only thing holding yourself back (which is hard to see without an extremely objective self-perspective).
Second: Achieving Balance
Don’t overdo either side of the paradox.
Clearly, as most things in life go, there must be a balance.
This requires a more conscious and intentional approach to life. Now, this is not intended to add any extra stress to your life, (if it does, you’re doing it wrong) but instead add more organization and purpose to choices you make in your life. As everything goes, ‘too much of a good thing is not good’(or something like that). We can go back-and-forth all day but in the end, even if you have piles and piles of money or a life-time supply of ice cream you’ll either run out of things to spend your money on or begin to hate ice cream.
The goal is to have harmony between spending and saving, speaking and listening, doing and watching, etc. Too much of one and you might end up broke (remember think of your future…), saying too much, learning nothing, and always ‘too’ busy. Too much of the other and you might end up money-hungry, unhappy, and un-experienced with zero-friends. Now, I get these are pretty extreme cases but you get the picture. My suggestion = Ask yourself questions and (do your best) give yourself honest answers.
If you can’t think of questions to ask, below are a handful to get you started - just be aware that tailoring this to your unique life is imperative.
Is this something I want/have wanted and will actually use? Is it something I need? Will I gain something positive from it? Will someone else gain something positive from it?
Will it just sit and collect dust?
Is this an opportunity of a life time? Is it worth it? Do I really care? Is this something I am excited about/for?
How will the outcome of my choices affect me or others?
Will I regret it? (which is an entirely different blog post on its own)
Does it go against who I am or what I believe?
Will I still be able to afford groceries, bills, etc. after this purchase? (this probably should have gone first, but at least it has been said)
Does it present unnecessary danger or harm to myself or others? (does not include things like skydiving)
Third: Other Tidbits
Mistakes & accidents – They happen and they are ok! In fact, they are recommended. Make them - unintentionally of course! These tend to be the most authentic moments in life, also the places where some of the biggest growth can happen. Embrace it, learn from it, and move forward!
Be proud of who you were, who you are, and how far you’ve come – Otherwise, be excited for the journey ahead. Note to self: don’t compare your page 1 to someone else’s chapter 37. #SameBookDifferentPage
Actually think - Take time throughout your day (even if it’s only 30 seconds) to reflect on certain situations and emotions you feel, then address them appropriately. Try to rationalize what is going on and utilize the excitement, fear, anger, or whatever it may be to push you forward.
Don’t be your only weakness. This will absolutely take conscious effort at first, and maybe forever – but the fact that you’re being intentional and critical of yourself in this positive way gives you a one up on everyone else.
Regrets – Don’t let them consume you! Take chances, learn from them, and BE BETTER. #NoRagrets
All of this comes down to personal judgment and opinions of what is and is not important in YOUR own life. So this is something you’ll have to figure out for yourself.
If you got nothing from this post (which if you made it this far without comprehending a single word, I’d be impressed lol) then just try to remember the importance of
BEing BOLD. BEing FEARLESS. and BEing YOU.
But that’s according 2 Me,
PS: I’d love to hear your thoughts about the types of questions you might ask yourself or any other thoughts/tips you have relating to this paradox. Did anything I suggest help? ...Or at least get you to start thinking?
I’m all ears!