When I look back at my childhood and my university years, I wish I’d enjoyed the people in my life more, and studied less. I wish I’d spent more time just being a normal person, doing the things that normal, more balanced people do. I might not have gotten the same scholarships or attention if I hadn’t worked as hard as I did, but I also might not look back at my 20’s as this big vacuum, a lost decade. And does it really matter that I got 100% on that big exam?
Do you hear yourself talking to yourself, or your spouse, or your kids, or your friends, about “someday”? When the kids are out of school…when my student loans are paid…when the house is paid off…when I retire…sound familiar?
I’m not suggesting you retire now, or run wild spending money on every whim instead of saving it. But, every time you catch yourself promising yourself, or someone else, what “someday” is going to be like, consider what aspect you might be able to incorporate into your life, right now. Are you fantasizing about spending retirement fishing in your cabin on the lake? Then make sure you plan some cabin and fishing time into your life, now. Do you plan to spend more time with your kids after you get your new business off the ground? Make a point of scheduling time with them, now. Life doesn’t always wait for us, and all we really have is now.
New acquaintances who I meet often email me afterwards, and suggest that we go out for coffee or dinner. Over the last year, I’ve usually responded by saying I’m really busy, but would love to, perhaps in a few weeks. And then I’d forget. It hit me the other day, how many wonderful friendships I’ve probably missed out on, simply by putting that coffee off until “someday”.
If you were lying on your deathbed, looking back at this time of your life, what would you tell your present-day self to do more of, today? Now go out and do it! Once you start incorporating what’s important to you into your life, today, you’ll be surprised how little you talk, or think, about that elusive “someday”.