Human beings are funny creatures. We each have our own idiosyncrasies in life but there is one common flaw that we all seem to share. That is not fully embracing life until something tragic happens. The 9/11 attacks were tragic and awful. In the aftermath it is also the last time the U.S. truly felt united. People from all walks of life banding together to support a nation in unity against foreign terrorists. That was twenty years ago, and the U.S. feels as divided now as it has ever felt in my lifetime. My intent of this article is to inspire others to not wait 20 years to make a change in their life but rather embrace it fully now. Here are three ways you can get started.
My favorite word in the English dictionary is choice. The reason for that, is our entire life and our freedom are choices that we get to make. I feel grateful every day that I live in a country that allows us the freedoms that we are afforded. However, so often we are prisoners of our very own mind. We don’t choose to fully embrace life and live full out. We choose to play a small game in life and settle for the path of least resistance. Louise Hay said “I choose to make the rest of my life the best of my life”. You can too, choose to be your absolute best today.
If you knew that you had one year to live, would you go about it differently? If that date were marked in your calendar and you could not change it, how would you behave? These are the questions that can provide real perspective. Would you worry about the petty things in life such as what someone said about you, especially if they are not in your inner circle? Would you hold your children a bit tighter when you gave them a hug, savoring every moment that you had with them? Are there “bucket list” items that you continually push off because it’s not the right time? We all know the proper answers to these questions, but we lack perspective because thankfully we don’t know when our metaphorical time clock is being punched.
“The trouble is you think you have time.” That quote came from Buddha and has influenced the way I approach life. We are not on this Earth for all that long, so we really don’t have time to wait. Bronnie Ware wrote a book called, The Top Five Regrets of The Dying. She is an Australian nurse who worked in palliative care, caring for the patients in the last 12 weeks of their lives. The most common regret these patients had was “I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me”. If you are feeling that way yourself, don’t wait and have that regret. Make the change now!
Tragedy and pain are inevitable in life. We are all going to face hardships that we don’t want to face. My hope is those tragedies are not the springboard for you to make the changes in life that you can make today. Living full out is a philosophy that you can employ now so you don’t have to live with regret. Ask yourself if there is anything that you really want to do or be now? If the answer is yes (it always is) then choose to act today with ferocious energy. That may just change your perspective on what your life can really be.