Live Like You Were Dying


There is that classic saying “Don’t take anything for granted because you never know what tomorrow holds “. The other day I got an email from an old friend that I haven’t spoken to in years. He told me that he had an accident; he was walking across the street in London and got hit by a bus. He has been in and out of a coma, broke 50 + bones and now has some brain damage. He said this all with a silly sense of humor that he hasn’t lost one bit of even given all that has happened to him.. I can’t even begin to tell you how much his email had an impact on me. When you hear things like this you can’t help but think about how fortunate you are to be alive and healthy.

Many of us are so fixated on what we don’t have that we aren’t able to appreciate all the blessings that we experience each and every day. Just taking time to acknowledge the simple basic things like the roof over your head or your health can shift your attitude. Every week in my class I teach, I have my students silently give gratitude for at least 5 things that they were thankful for that day. This is a great daily ritual to add to your life.

A few years ago I was lucky enough to be invited to a lecture by Sogyal Rinpoche, who wrote the book “The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying.” You know when there is that one sentence that someone says that takes your breath away and you have that ah-ha moment? Well I had it that night when he said, “when a person dies the thing they think about the most was how they lived, the difference they made in the world and how they made people feel.” He then had us think about if we lived everyday as it might be our last, how would we live and what would we do differently? A great thing to ponder!

I have a dear friend who is such an inspiration to me. He recently announced that he is retiring from a huge and VERY powerful job. He is leaving because he reached the top of his game and has grown as much as he can in this one area. Instead of staying out of fear, comfort, security or ego he is following his inner knowing that it’s time to spread his wings further, take a leap of faith and risk exploring other options and possibilities that feed his passion. How many of us have stayed in unhealthy, outgrown relationships or jobs where we feel our spirit was dying so much longer than needed, out of fear, lack of trust or faith that if we were to let this go and move on that there might be something actually better for us out there?

“How many times do you see a U-haul following a hearse? You can’t take it with you.” – Shirley Kaplan

My friend Marcia’s mom once said to her “ When you die it’s not that house that you lived in, the clothes that you wore or the car that you drove that people will remember. They will think about the way that they felt around you and the loved you shared with them. That’s what will stay with them forever.”

Something to ponder: Where are you playing it safe and staying stuck in your life? Are you living your life to your full potential? Take some time this week to really contemplate your life and think about if you were dying right now, would you be happy about the way you lived? If not, what needs to change?


SUGGESTED READING (A few of my favorite inspirational books):

Inspiration & The power of intention – Wayne dyer
Living with joy & Personal power through awareness – Sanaya Roman
Excuse me your life is waiting – Lynn Grabhorn
Living in the light – Shakti Gawain
A New Earth – Eckhart Tolle
A return to love – Marianne Williamson
Getting unstuck & when things fall apart – Pema chondron
The power is with in you & you can heal your life – Louise Hay
Positive energy & Emotional freedom – Judith Orloff
A path with a heart – Jack Kornfeild
The end of your world- Adyashanti
The Fifth agreement – Don Miguel Ruiz



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