When I was 21, my dad said something to me that has stuck with me ever since:
This is it. This is not a dress rehearsal. There are no do-overs.
We only have this one life. Make it count. All those cliches that say to ‘do one thing each day that scares you’ and ‘live each day like it is your last’ and so on – well, they have a point really.
Do the things that matter to you, don’t worry about the opinions of others, find your own happiness. You won’t get another chance to live this day again, ever.
Life is short and it will pass faster than you know. Don’t put things off. Don’t wait for the perfect circumstances.
I don’t have much more to add except this line from Mary Oliver’s The Summer Day:
Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?
Write the Mary Oliver quote above in your journal. Now, list all the things you want to do. Create a bucket list full of items big and small. Start checking the items off.
Answer these questions: What is it you really ache for? What sets your soul on fire? What do you think about more than anything else? What moves you? What makes you feel alive? Now consider, how can you do more of this, every day?
Obituary exercise: write your obituary if you were to continue living your life the way you are now. Then, write your obituary if you chose to live your life as fully as possible, doing all the things you dream of.
If you were to win the lottery and never had to work again, what would your ideal life look like? How can you start to make your life more like this ideal version, now?
Note: this post was originally part of a series of 30 life lessons and journal prompts for my 30th birthday. You can access the rest of the lessons and prompts here.