Let’s be honest, okay?
Life’s kind of short. I’ll be thirty in a few months, and — if I’m being honest— although it feels like I’ve been here forever, if I look back, it’s as if everything I’ve done so far has gone by in the blink of a second.
At my age, I’ve probably only got another a few more decades. You may not have much longer. I don’t say this to depress you — I say this to challenge you: What are you going to do with your time? Are you killing time or are you seizing it?
First, acknowledge that if you’re reading this, you’re probably doing okay. Be grateful for that. Be grateful because you have internet access, electricity. A full stomach. All your senses in full working order. Not everyone has that.
Second, it’s time to assess your priorities. It’s human nature to wander and wonder about what really matters in this world. What’s worth worrying about? What’s worth doing? How do we maximize a finite set of time, attention and energy?
You must develop a filter to focus in on what matters and cut out the superfluous tasks.
During my time on this earth, I’ve stumbled upon three universal, inevitable truths that instill a sense of urgency while also breaking my heart a bit. Just enough to stop procrastinating, and to do my best to seize the day.
Truth 1: Energy levels drop over time, health deteriorates.
As time goes on, our energy levels drop. We don’t seem to be able to get as much done as we used to.
Our health deteriorates as well.
We only have this one body to live in right now. Take good care of it. The obvious things that you should do: drink water, sleep, eat well.
It’s a worthy investment, trust me.
There’s no point in eating junk food or starving yourself to save more money, and in the process destroying your body or not having enough energy to get stuff done.
Truth 2: You will run out of time.
Once this minute passes, you do not get it back.
You can spend time, but never, ever buy it. You cannot make time. This makes time the most valuable commodity there is.
Every minute you waste today, is a minute you never, ever get back.
Carpe diem, as the Romans would say. Seize the day. Make the most of your time, because there will come a time when you’ll run out of time.
Truth 3: People always leave.
People are not replaceable, nor renewable resources. Once they’re gone, they’re gone.
And whether they want to or not, people always leave.
You should keep that in mind.
Take care of your family, your friends, and your community. Be kind. Love fiercely. Fight for equality and dignity. Never waste someone’s time, or hold someone else accountable for your own happiness. Give others the respect that you someday wish to earn.
Everyone you meet will leave you. And there will come a time when you will leave them too.
Make sure you live your life in such a way that when it’s your time to leave this world, no person can say that it is a joy that you’re no longer here.
Health, time, and people are the only three things in this world that are never returned to us once they’re gone.
Sure, you could consider this to be a dark and depressing realization, but it’s also liberating.
Health, time, and people… how you honor them defines how your life goes; they are what really matter. Everything else is just noise.
Money? You can always make more of it.
Someone did you wrong? Spare the revenge fantasies. How people treat you is their karma, how you react is yours.
Your blog, your social media profiles? Your job? Just noise. And if you give everything up for any of these, you will one day regret it.
Health, time, and people… these are what truly matters.
Don’t believe me?
Ask someone who can’t escape the lonely feeling of sorrow over never leaving their hometown, or sharing a home with someone they felt pressured to marry but couldn’t love, spending their 9-to-5 at a soulless dead-end job, never learning to play the piano or write that book they’ve always wanted to.
Ask them what truly matters and what they’d want back once they run out of time.
That’s why you should be truly alive, because you’ll be dead soon enough.
Your health will fail you.
You will run out of time.
Everyone you meet will leave you.
This doesn’t mean that nothing matters. It means that how you honor your health, time, and humanity is all that ever will.