I want to talk to you for a moment about dying empty. When talking to Michael Hall on episode #115, he hit on a visualization I’ve had in my head for a very long time: the image of someone on their deathbed thinking back on their life with regret. Yes, they played it safe. Yes, they had some money to die comfortably and with the peace of mind that their loved ones wouldn’t be financially saddled. But, what that person is thinking about is all they missed out on–corners of the world they will never see; old friendships they let fade, and that one big passion they never went for. That to me, is the saddest part of the image.
But, then that image flashes into another–one where the pages of all their life’s dreams weren’t left unwritten, but fulfilled. They traveled. They took chances. They succeeded. They failed. And, they never had to ask “what if?” And, the dying person is instead, smiling, because they left all their passion on the table. They died empty.
Which one do you want to be? I want to die as empty as I can.
For me and most curvists, dreamers, and doers, we have to pursue what we love in order to not leave this world with regret. I know I can’t rest until my podcasts are successful, until my marketing clients are happy and telling others about me, until my ideas are at least fleshed out, if not yet acted upon. I simply cannot rest, because I simply cannot regret.
The only way I have found to do that is to step into life everyday full of confidence and without fear. (Or, at least… fake the courage and don’t let lack of confidence and presence of fear hold me back.) I follow my gut on what feels right–both in business strategy, podcast creation, and people I let into my inner professional circle. And, at the end of the day, I forgive myself for mistakes and move forward. I constantly goal-set, act, rinse, and repeat.
Working hard doesn’t scare me. Dying full of regret does.