I was talking to a friend last night who said, “it seems like you are having a rough year. Good news is…” I stopped him there. Sure this certainly has not been my favorite year personally or professionally as the trials have been tougher than most.
But I said, a bit more pragmatically, as you get older this is just what life is like. As you age you lose more people you love deeply, you get more scars, as you get more responsibility or success the work gets harder, the ask gets bigger, the expectations follow and when you fall down — and you will, it is a farther fall than when you are 20.
But then you get back up.
Imagine how you might change the way you lived your life if you got up each day and said this is the only day like today I get. This is part of a single lap, this is a page in my story, but I won’t get to see the finish. You may feel it morbid but I tend to think that if I get up every day and put weight into the seconds, the minutes, and hours of the day I can put more meaning in.
This isn’t about getting more out, it is about putting more back in. Spending more time with your kids, your wife, your friends. NOT doing things out of obligation, canceling anything you don’t want to do, socially speaking, because none of us have that kind of time to waste. Not one of us has that kind of time.
Think about someone you admire, someone you REALLY look up to.
Why? Why do you admire them?
Second question, have you seen them sulking around complaining about how life isn’t fair, or that they didn’t get a __________________ (insert want), or they wish they could _________________ (insert action)? Or do you admire their courage, their ability to take risks, their attitude towards challenges and friction, their superhuman ability to get more done in a day than you ever seem to?
My guess is that it might be the latter.
And the reason that they can seemingly get all of that done is because they understand what is at stake. They understand that time is a commodity not to be wasted for any reason. Time is a commodity that never gives a return, it ticks down until your account runs out and each one of our accounts has an unknown balance in them.
Sure it would be easier if you knew you would live to 53, 73. 89, or 106…but you don’t. So you have to attack the day like it owes you something and go make a mark because if you got to the end of this piece, you have something to contribute.
You get one lap, act accordingly.