When I wrote my post, Grab Today By The Balls Because It Just Might Be Your Last, last week, my goal was to try to get you thinking about how short life is and how everything we hold most dear can be gone in an instant. It was intended to be a wake up call for those who are pissing away their days doing meaningless shit and to offer up some perspective on why it’s so important to use our time wisely.
It was a hard post to write not only because of the tragic stories involved, but because it made me look at my own life and how I’m spending my days.
I think about how short life really is all the time. It’s something that keeps me awake at night and scares the shit out of me. What if I waste my life? What if I’m 75 years old and haven’t done what I wanted? What if I don’t teach my children the right things? How will I feel being too old to make the changes in my life that I so desperately wanted for years?
These are terrifying thoughts.
There is not a damn thing I can do about the passing of time. What I can do is use my time exactly how I want. I can choose to get another job and start collecting a regular paycheck. I can choose to play it safe and live by the rules society deems appropriate. I can choose to go through the motions of being a father. I can choose to live out an average existence.
But I choose not to.
I’m not a lifestyle design guru or someone who will tell you that your life should be automated to work 4 hours a week. I don’t have the desire or see the need to spend three years working 18 hours a day ramping up a business that makes $80,000 per month or creating something with the sole purpose of selling it and cashing out.
What I’m going to tell you is that your days and my days can be filled doing meaningful work, the stuff that truly matters to us. We can have abundant freedom and flexibility in our lives, and can have an overflowing sense of passion and contentment because of it.
How do I know this?
Because this is how I am living right now.
What Will You Choose?
I think it’s safe to say that you want more of a lot of things. You want more freedom in your life. You want more love in your relationships. You want more quality friendships. You want more money in the bank. You want more fulfillment. You want to feel more passionate and energetic during the day. You want to lay your head down on your pillow at night with a feeling of peace and happiness.
And I have one simple question..
What’s preventing you from having all of these things and more?
It’s nothing more than how you spend your time.
Quality Time Vs Passed Time
There is a huge distinction between quality time and just passing time. Most people live in a constant state of work related stress, endless to-do’s, and with an impending feeling of “not enough”. Living like this does nothing but spend your time on the wrong things. Every day gone by puts you that much closer to the end of your life.
For example; think about your last 3 or 4 weekends. What did you do? Did you wake up energized, ready to spend a few great days with your family? Did you really connect with your kids, let them experience new things, and embrace the opportunity to be present with them?
Or did you wake up tired from a long and dreary work week, hopefully getting to sleep in while the kids watched cartoons? Did you drag your butt out of bed, lounge around for a few hours and wonder what you were going to do? Did you sit in front of the tv, waste a few hours, and try to figure out your day?
The latter scenario is so common and I know because I used to live like that.
For years, I would come home after 8 hours sitting in a cubicle and be so worn out and miserable that I didn’t want to engage with anyone. It wasn’t fair, especially to my girls. They didn’t deserve a grumpy dad. They deserved to see their dad excited to see them and ready to play with them.
And it wasn’t until I made some major changes in my life that I really took on the role I should have been in all along. Now my time with them is spent creating experiences that will help shape their lives for the better. And for me, there is nothing more important than that.
Make Time For The Most Important Stuff
What is most important to you? Is it time with your loved ones? Is it having fame and fortune? Is it being able to hike the Appalachian Trail for a week in solitude? Is it having a business that lets you pursue your creative outlets?
Regardless, you owe it to yourself to make it happen. You do. Your time is your most precious commodity by far.
There is no good reason you aren’t experiencing the things that make you feel your absolute best. Anything less and you’re selling yourself out. It’s a tragedy and it’s fucking bullshit. It’s nothing more than lies you tell yourself of why you can’t have what you want.
And in order for that to change, YOU need to change.
For me, I value my relationships most. My daughters are my world. My freedom, my income, my fulfillment, and my health are all extremely important to me but nothing can compare to my love for Georgia and Lily.
There is nothing I want more than to teach my girls how to be good people, to be happy, to enjoy life, and to be wildly curious about life’s great adventures.
You only have one life. Your time is very limited here. Think long and hard about what you want.
Now what are you prepared to do in order to get it?