If you said, “No”, what would do without knowing a “firm” date? Would you use the unknown part to help you be more diligent and intentional about taking care of the things you’ve been meaning to take care of? Would you use the uncertainty of a set amount of time to talk to people you haven’t seen in a while? To forgive those you’re holding grudges against? To live today to your full potential?
Occasionally, throughout history, people have stated that they suddenly had a sense that they needed to get their affairs in order. They couldn’t explain how they knew, or why they knew – but they knew. So, they did things comparable to what the song “Live Like You Were Dying” lists. They went “skydiving, Rocky Mountain climbing, 2.7 seconds on a bull named ‘Fu Man Chu’”.
Whatever you do, do something that is meaningful, radiant, impactful, and lasting! Because, if you are purposeful in what you do and what you focus on, then however much time you have, you will make it count.
Also, say the words. Before it’s too late, say the words that you need to say. If you have something that you should tell someone, then do it. Regret is bought in bulk, but paid for over a long period of time at retail. You can avoid a lot of regret by doing the things you’ve been putting off, by asking for forgiveness where you have wronged someone, and by saying the meaningful things that you need to say.
At a funeral, recently, one of the speakers said that because he had waited too long, he would now never be able to have a particular discussion with his friend that he had been meaning to have. And because he had waited too long, he would never again be able to laugh with him over a cup of coffee or a couple of beers. He was standing up there, in front of everyone in the church, bearing part of his soul. Had he known the ending time for his friend (or if his friend had known) would things have gone differently? Would they have acted on that knowledge and done the things that they felt compelled to do? Perhaps. Perhaps not. But, it’s still an idea worth considering.
The point is, whether or not you ever know precisely how much time you have left on this planet, I hope you will use your time in the best ways possible, for the best reasons possible, and with the best people possible. Make your mark, and make it well!
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