Yesterday the expression Carpe diem came up in a conversation I was having with a friend, little did I know how much relevance it would be today
This phrase originated from Quintus Horatius Flaccus, known as Horace, who was a Roman poet. The Carpe Diem seize the day philosophy teaches us not to miss out on life and instead make the most of the present time and give little thought to the future. Life is too short to throw away, you owe it to yourself to make the most of it.
Don’t be fooled by the calendar. There are only as many days in the year as you make use of. ~Charles Richards
So many of you have put life on hold until you’ve achieved that financial or business position you desire to reach. In order to get to this point you deem a prerequisite to your happiness, you simply put life on hold. In a way you stop living, promising yourself and perhaps your loved ones that soon things will be different and you’ll have more time for them. I myself am goal driven but I know not to put my life on hold and instead live life as it’s my last day. Instead of waiting for our destination to bring us happiness allow our journey to be what brings us happiness.
Live every day as if it were going to be your last; for one day you’re sure to be right. ~Harry “Breaker” Harbord Morant
This morning I received a skype message from a good friend understandably upset by news he had been given. He was very down. He said: ” Typical me! As soon as one part of my life goes well another goes pear-shaped. Just had what will probably be my last conversation with my sister as she has a major operation on Monday morning to completely reconstruct her neck and vocal cord area. She’s scared she won’t come through. Even if she does, she’s now been told she only has about 8 months to live.”
My response to this was “Then teach her to live everyday as though it’s her last and celebrate the time she has left.”
I remember when my sister passed away. The thought I held on to was she was now in a better place escaped at last from the difficult life she had to endure but I wish I’d had been able to spend more time with her and create many magic moments for us both. There is a positivity to everything if we look for it.
I know how hard it is, when faced with the storms of everyday life, to see things with a positive perspective, to deal with this type of news my friend has to deal with is incredibly challenging.
I want you to try and imagine if you were the one told you only had 8 months to live (for whatever reason), what now would matter to you the most?
Would the paperwork waiting to be processed matter? Would the work you’re doing matter? Would the meetings you’re supposed to have matter? Will having that big car, nice house, high-paying job, a wardrobe full of well known designer clothes and all the latest cool computer and mobile phones still be of great importance? I’m not saying they wouldn’t matter but it’s important to ask yourself if they would.
I know for me completing my book and ensuring what I think is the life changing course I’ve created is made public to the world would matter. For me doing work that matters would matter. Helping others, making a vital contribution to society, creating something brilliant and inspiring. It’s not the money that matters, but the impact of the work, it’s that which matters.
My other priority undoubtedly would be my loved ones. I would make certain that I made a lot of time for them telling them frequently how much I loved them enjoying every moment I got to spend with them never thinking about what I should be doing with that time instead ill just live in the moment. Show them how important they are. Take the time to cuddle with your children or grandchildren, to read with them, to play with them, to have good conversations with them, to value your time together.
Then my third priority would be to travel and see some of the amazing sights this wonderful world has to offer. Often I have watched the geographic television channel totally captivated by the locations they show and have thought to myself I would love to see these breath taking places with my own eyes.
How crazy it is that I would only make this a priority once I knew I only had a limited time left to live. But maybe for some that’s what it takes, being forced to at last value our time and seize the day … Carpe diem.
We would wake up to the fact that experiencing life does matter such as being in the moment, finding passion in our lives, seeing the world and traveling, being with the people we love and doing amazing things with them.
To my friend I say I’m sorry about your sister I truly am, and to both you and the others that read this post I highly recommend that you spend at least a little time figuring out what really matters and living a life that shows this. No longer allow yourself to waste time on unimportant stuff and make room for what matters.
Choose to live a life that is filled with the important stuff.
Whether we have 8 months, 8 years or 80 years you have to use your time wisely. treat it as a gift we have been given and cherish it.
I send my thoughts and prayers to Fiona my friends’ sister.
What would matter to you?