Hello, wise ones! Each week, I would like to share with you some of my favorite quotes and speech excerpts from clever, ambitious figures in our society. These are words that still ring in my head every day, and for good reason. The trick is to focus less on who the quote came from, and instead, absorb the meaning within the words – a theme I’d like to apply to this whole “space” we call WizdomHub. I hope you find something that inspires you as much as it did me:) Today’s words come from Steve Jobs, former CEO of Apple Computer Inc. and Pixar Animation Studios. This is an excerpt from the commencement address he gave in 2005 at Stanford’s graduation ceremony. Jobs himself never attained a degree from any college.
“…for the past 33 years I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself, “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I’m about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something. (…)Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure — these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart. ” -Steve Jobs
So, how about you? Would you be satisfied with your day’s duties if today was your last twenty-four hours? Maybe you’d rather be skydiving, bungee jumping, rock climbing or simply sitting at home with a cup of coffee and your favorite song playing from across the room. Maybe you’d spend it with family, loved ones. Maybe not. Maybe you’d wish you had done more with your life…would you? The message I pulled from this quote was that so many of us see the way we live our lives as set in stone, unchangeable, within the confines of what we call reality. Often, we structure our lives around who others think we are and their resulting expectations of us. But we forget that we build our own reality, and we can be whoever we want to be, virtually whenever we want. The only thing lying between us and the life we want is a lack of ambition, mindfulness, and the common tendency of the mind to settle. Don’t let the “good enough” attitude keep you from your greatest of aspirations. You too may be dead soon. Have you done all you wanted to while you were here?