Death is never a happy thought; we fear our mortality as we do that of those we love, yet death is an inevitability that none of us can escape. In recent years, there has been a movement to re-frame death in our minds — to make it less of a taboo and more of an undeniable fact to ponder and explore. While we may fear or dread death, one thing is clear—our lives, relationships and existence have more meaning because they are not infinite, because we will one day perish. When framed this way, death can be a source of inspiration.
1. We are All Alike
In a time when racial tensions plague our country and hate brings about terrible acts of terror, it is vitally important to remember that we are all the same. Our humanity binds us beyond all else. Our mortality unites us irrevocably. Before you pass judgment on your neighbor or someone whose culture or religion you disagree with, consider this very pertinent fact. We are more alike than we are different and you would do better to explore that commonality than to embrace the differences.
2. We Can Use Some Perspective
It’s easy to get hung up on the little things. Did everyone see when you got that piece of toilet paper stuck to your leg? Does your boss hate you? Did you make the right decision leaving that job? We are plagued by similar thoughts day in and day out, yet in the larger scheme of things they all pale in comparison to the big picture: your family, your friends, your spouse. Since we do not have an infinite amount of time to enjoy the pleasures and poignancy of life, let’s make more of a point to do so on a daily basis.
3. We Need a Push
All of us have put aside a big decision, avoided taking a chance thinking that we will have time to do so later—yet “later” will come sooner than you think and you may just miss it. Harkening back to the idea that the little things will fade away while the large ones may just shape your life, consider taking those chances, forgetting to be embarrassed or scared. Looking back on your life, you will likely not regret being brave, but surely you will regret only giving in to your fears.
Thinking about your own mortality does not have to be negative, in fact there is a lot of positivity and motivation that can be gleaned from doing so. Reflection is a close friend of productivity and a life well-lived.