What would you do if you died tomorrow? How mortality builds resilience

Imagine this is your last day on Earth.

What would you do? Would you sack off work? Spend all day in the pub, a casino or on the beach?

Would you seek out the people in the world that mean the most to you and use every millisecond to experience and remember the things that you love about them. Their smile, the way they walk, the funny things they say and do? The way they show you how they feel about you?

Ancient philosophers spent days sitting on rocks pondering the answers to such questions.

Seneca wrote “Nothing is a better proof of a well ordered mind than a man’s (sic) ability to stop just where he is and pass some time in his own company.”

Then again, they didn’t have Instagram so they had a lot more time.

Seneca wrote “Nothing is a better proof of a well ordered mind than a man’s  (sic) ability to stop just where he is and pass some time in his own company.”
Seneca wrote “Nothing is a better proof of a well ordered mind than a person’s ability to stop just where he is and pass some time in his own company.”

But also they had no certainty of life beyond that which the day provided.

Our ancestors lived in a more unforgiving world where life expectancy was shorter and danger lurked around every corner.

And perception of mortality focuses the mind on the stuff that’s important in life.  In the day ahead.

When most people can’t see past the end of their next phone contract, it’s difficult to think about your life ending and how much potential you are going to leave behind.

They say we live in an age of distraction. I say we live in an age of exteriority.

It’s easy to indulge in frivolity

Especially if we haven’t spent time in our own company to work out what’s important. To experience living, and to leave something positive after you’ve gone.

Whether you live just for today, or another 80 years, there’s no time to waste.

#stoicism #resilience #mentalhealth #nexus8

Matt

Experienced business leader, mentor and coach, with fascinations for technology, psychology and ancient philosophies. A self-confessed techno hippy with a unique talent for bringing the best out in people.

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