We daydream, we look out the window, we procrastinate, we do what we know is a waste of time, and so we continue until the ultimate deadline comes into view. It could be us, or someone we deeply care about, and the emergence of the end of the road blows away our self-delusion. This is it, the realisation finally dawns. We must do what really matters with the time left.
But why throw away the best part of one’s life until it’s too late? Why not make each day one we have to look back on with satisfaction? The most important things are not the ones to be left to the indefinite future, but should be prioritised for the present. Today, what must I achieve before my consciousness extinguishes at the onset of sleep tonight? Have you answered the question yet, and are you acting on it?
It’s curious how so many people who get a narrow escape with a misdiagnosis or a false report slip straight back into a habit of squandering life’s precious opportunities. How much time has each of us really got left to love, be kind, create, complete, protest, craft, nurture potential, overcome injustice? It’s unforgivable to forgo the hours, days to lead a meaningful life because one has once again forgotten the sand is always running out of the hourglass.
Perhaps some of us need a constant reminder. A chess set for those with a taste for Bergmanesque culture; a Brad Pitt poster for those who know the meaning of inescapable blankness having watched him portray death in ‘Meet Joe Black’; a listen to the Righteous Brothers’ ‘Unchained Melody'; or another viewing of Woody Allen’s ‘Crimes and Misdemeanors’. Whatever it is, don’t wait for death before you embrace your life.