How much do you invest in your life? How much time and money do you spend on life?
It has been said that Lebron James spends over seven figures on his physical health. Not astounding, considering the shape he’s in and the amount of money he makes. In the end, it’s a lot of money. His physical life must be important to him.
How about you?
First, don’t make the mistake of thinking that only the rich and famous can invest in their lives. Everything, is relative, for the rich and the poor. What matters is your commitment to life. This really is about mindset and what you choose to do. Every successful person knows this. What is ironic, at least in America, is we put little value on life. This is further compounded by our over-valuing of money, celebrity, physical appearance, career, and more. Don’t get me wrong, most talk a good game, but the numbers don’t lie. We’re advancing in areas that are, on the face, good. But we’re retreating in the areas of life that are vital.
Considering that life is a limited-time offer, you would think we’d “get after it.” Maybe we really have bought the ocean-front property in Wyoming. I hope you will consider investing more of your resources in your life. Maybe like:
If you need more clarity on the above examples, reach out to me.
Are you fully present?
The above question could be the most exposing question of our time. Let’s be real; we live in the age of distractions. It’s no surprise that we even rationalize the distractions. Ever told someone you love to wait a minute, all the while, you’re busy scanning a social media site. Being fully present is a rarity amongst rarities.
What does it mean to be fully present?
To be fully present is to have faith. This kind of faith stands and says the moment in front is the most important moment ever. You might be questioning with some skepticism. Maybe you’re thinking what my son told me this week; “I don’t have time.” As it is for him, so it is for you. You have plenty of time. The question is what are you doing with it.
In my times of reflection, I can see and feel what it means to be so distracted as to not remember that feeling. The feeling like this morning when I could hear the rain and the birds singing in harmony. So many pursuits can get in the way of being present. We jump from experience to experience hoping that something will last. We hope something will hold up under the raging storm inside.
We miss the beauty right before our eyes. If only we would slow down and hold the look.
Here are a some tips on becoming fully present:
Call on me if you need some help here.
I spent a lot of years being in a hurry. As I look back, I wonder what for. Learning is about the only thing.
I’ve found the end of hurry.
In my twenties, it felt like being a dog where your master is immaturity. I ran from, and to, thing after thing. I was full of anger, energy and arrogance. There was some tenderness and compassion. My wife was the one who brought those two things out. I honestly think she felt sorry for me in all of my storms.
In my thirties, I was still in a hurry. In this frame I saw things to be conquered and possessed. I had my eye on what was to be found over the horizon. I started to hear more friends and advisors say things like; “be here now” and “take time to reflect.” I wasn’t having any of it, at least in my behavior. I was at war, the tale of two Eric’s.
In my forties (now and coming to a close), I discovered how precious time is. Certainly, the reality of what’s left dawned on me. The more important awakening was:
So, are you in a hurry?
Got this from a friend. It was a response to a note I sent him regarding staying in your moments.
Thanks Eric. Great timing.
Last Sunday, my wife and I were resting after a long day of splitting wood and stacking. We were sitting in our garage just talking when we heard a loud ‘pop’ and then a sliding sound.
We walked to the entrance of our garage to look out toward the road (our front yard is 100 meters long and spotted with mature trees) to see if we could see what made the sound.
We saw a truck stopping with two people getting out and hurrying toward our driveway entrance. We also saw something else on the ground, but couldn’t make it out.
We ran up to the entrance to find that an elderly couple had a motorcycle wreck on our road. Their rear tire had blown and they were thrown from the bike, hit pavement, and then slid into our yard. The bike was still in the road, and the husband was holding his wife in our ditch, propped up on her side to prevent her from drowning in the massive amount of blood that was pouring from her nose and mouth. She was unconscious and non-responsive, but breathing (difficultly).
I called 911 and ran to the house for towels and water. My wife was with the other people that had witnessed the wreck and they were calling all of the family members of the two as the driver of the bike told them where their phones were.
Once the two ambulances, two fire trucks, four state troopers arrived, they moved the husband away from his wife and proceeded to work on her. Life flight was then called and moments later, a helicopter was landing in my neighbor’s yard to fly both of them to a nearby trauma center.
This lasted for several hours. They worked on the woman for a while before flying her to Dayton and the man suffered a broken hip and broken shoulder.
I couldn’t help but think when it was all done how the day must have started for those two. They woke to a beautifully sunny day with perfect temperatures and no clouds in the sky. They must have said to one another “let’s go ride around and enjoy this picture perfect day and feel the wind on our faces and be together.” They were 5 miles from home and were headed there to end the evening…..only to have it end in tragedy.
I watched family members rush to the scene and express a variety of emotions; anger, sadness, fear, calm. I felt emotional as I thought of my wife and how I would react if I were holding her knowing it may be the last time I am allowed. The emptiness that it would create.
The woman died on Tuesday evening. She was in a coma, and they cut away her skull to help with the swelling of the brain, but it was too much for her system and she passed.
I will be taking some time to hug my family more and to pray to God and thank him for the ‘now’, because we don’t know what the future, short or long, will hold.
“Love is stronger than death.”
I’ve lived long enough to have lost some things. The list includes people, careers, health, and more. Probably true for you as well. The reality of loss is not an age-related thing, though our culture still sells the BS of loss is for the older crowd.
I value what I’ve lost.
I hear Joni Mitchell in my head singing “well somethings lost and somethings gained in living everyday.” Our best remedy is the art of reflection and being. The consequence of reflecting and being, is you can’t be so distracted and doing in life. You better get this one down, your life, and its quality, might depend on it.
Hear’s what time hasn’t taken from me:
In all of life’s losses and heartbreaks, love remains. Whether I’ve fallen, chosen or awakened to, love has remained. That poem at the beginning is true, not even death. How can that be? I’ve had my moments of wondering, but the truth remains. When love enters you it never leaves. The colors and brush strokes may vary and change, but love never leaves.
It’s mysterious and beautiful.
What’s in your cup matters. So, as in life, whatever you choose to drink better be what you want. Your legacy will see its reflection in the contents.
As time unfurls, you’re often told to conform to some norm. Marketing and well intentioned (some not) people tell you what you must be. The lies are mixed with half-truths, and before you know it 10 years flies by. 10 years.
The shock and awe of the above reality should shake you to the core.
I’ve lost many so-called friends over the years. Typically, it occurred when I noticed a pattern of conditions. Unconditional love and friendship is rare. I would even test my theory by purposely going the opposite way. A fascinating thing occurred when I decided to do this. My calls were not returned. Hmmm, right? In my case, many just watched (and said nothing) as I took the poison pills.
You need to weed these sort of folks out of your life. They’re blocking the entrance for people who matter.
I can;’t stress the danger enough. So many people are living under the pressure of a world gone mad. It’s the type of pressure that can be habit-forming. It’s taken me almost 8 years to fully shed the skin of living someone else’s life. That’s the problem of doing something over and over again.
Do you know what’s in your cup?
Saw a young lady yesterday who has multiple myeloma. She is young. I found out about her condition a few months ago, but hadn’t talked to her since the diagnosis. I listened a lot. She spoke much about the importance of prayers, doing things to get through chemo, and doing things that always seemed ok to put off. No time to take for granted now. I was happy to sense that from her.
In my interaction I thought about how we modern men and women often wait until the end, before we start a beginning. It seems like the word late has vanished from our vocabulary. I won’t even go to the words too late. I guess when you feel invincible, time is always on your side.
You do realize we’re all terminal.
I don’t dance with any partner other than life. It feels right and natural to do this. So much of what we do should be about holding on loosely and letting go. We don’t own anything anyway. Sure it feels strange in the beginning and many will think you’ve lost your mind, but it’s what fits. No career, no amount money, no relationship, and no amount of notoriety will be able to substitute. No use in settling for the substitute.
I hope that young lady will be counted as a survivor one day. I also hope that her new beginnings will stick. This is a choice after all, to live over the sun.
I noticed (paid attention to) my kids and their screens this morning. I, like many, am challenged by what's acceptable for screen time in my home. Apple, Facebook and Google are just a few of the contenders for attention. Their business models are rooted deeply in this.
My post today is not so much about social media, as it is about what we spend our time on in a given day (given is a keyword here). We all have been given 1,440 minutes in each day.
Can you spare 3 minutes?
Sparing 3 minutes is a starting point. It's a starting point for you to discover how much a gift time is and maybe how much time you're wasting on the pursuits that, in the end, won't amount to much.
So what should you do with 3 minutes? Here's a suggestive list:
Now go do this every day. You'll still have 1,437 minutes leftover. Who knows, maybe that 3 minutes you spared will grow.
This past week was definitely the week that was. It started with a call from my mom needing to be taken to a emergency care facility. It turned out to be nothing major, but I'll confess I saw ghosts. Ghosts from four years ago, when my deceased father was making seemingly "no big deal" visits to the ER.
As I'm sitting the waiting area for my mom, my wife calls and tells me company has filed Chapter 7 bankruptcy and the entire company shutdown. To add measure to this, no severance, ho healthcare (the company disbanded the group health plan prior to entering the bankruptcy), no job.
Ok, I was a little disappointed!
The irony is on two fronts for me:
Just so you know, we're (my family and I) are taking a hit from this situation. Don't want you thinking I'm Superman. There are things we've got to figure out and adjust to. Here's a few of the issues we're working through: