If you knew the exact day that you were going to die, how would you deal with that information?
I think about dying everyday, it is one of the blessings and curses of my chosen profession. Being a funeral director has added an interesting perspective to my life and overall I look at this point of view as a blessing. But like anyone else, there are times when I forget all the lessons that come with this perspective. I can easily get caught up with life’s fast pace and miss out on the purpose of why I am here. For me, that purpose is simple, love one another and enjoy life.
So, what would you do if you knew the date of your death? How would your relationships with your family and friends be affected? Would you start a bucket list? Enroll in yoga? Eat more twinkies?
Do you think it would raise your self-awareness about the value of each moment or would it lead you into depression or panic?
Here’s the good news: none of us know when this day will come and having anxiety over it doesn’t help anyone. But just because we don’t know when that day will come doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t set aside time to think about it.
I want to dare you to think about your death day.
Take a deep breath, I’m asking you to do this because I believe there are more benefits in thinking about it then you know.
Try this, the next time you wake up say to yourself, “This is it, my last day on earth – what should this day be like?” – I know you still have to go about your daily routine but how would that mindset change the day-to-day? If it was your last day at work or last meal with your family how would you want to walk out?
Here are the options as I see them, we can leave:
- Thankful or full of regret
- Happy or sad
- Open minded or closed off
- Mentor or captor
- In the Present or in the Past
- Courageous or Fearful
Our avoidance of death or even thinking about death is a unique trait to western society and it’s something I’m passionate about changing. If you look at most other cultures, death is understood and embraced as something to face and consider. We are missing great opportunities to live more fulfilling lives unless we take time to confront our own mortality and consider what legacy we want to leave behind. My encouragement to you is to stop living in fear or avoidance of dying, look at it in the eyes, know that you will meet someday and LIVE accordingly.
So, what would you do if you knew your death date?