What Really Matters
Lessons From The Death Of A Year – And The Birth Of A New One
– Steve Jobs’ Stanford commencement speech
A time of the year when my thoughts turn to death.
Maybe it’s because the year’s dying. Or because it reminds me of when my father died. Or something else.
It’s also a time when I ponder that uncomfortable reality of my own death – and what I’ll leave behind when I’m gone.
My legacy (if you like words that sound pompous and self-important!).
Or my lessons learned in life.
I read a post by my friend Derek Sivers. This one. It’s another stark reminder of how frail our existence really is. About how limited is our time on earth. About what’s worthy and what’s a waste.
Shouldn’t we use what little time is ours to DO something – instead of frivolously frittering it away?
Last night, I watched “UP”. A story where our hero, Mr.Fredricksen, puts off his childhood dream for “later” – and almost misses going after it… forever. He finally dares to try.
I face the same dilemma. With so many things to do, work on, complete, enjoy – which one(s) should take priority?
These December musings always help re-focus on the right things.
This year (as the last), my writing takes top spot – after heart surgery for kids, of course.
There’s a book I started writing TEN YEARS ago. That matters. So I’ve almost finished it this year, and will shortly be ready to publish it.
There’s a blog I first published 8 years back. That matters. So I’ve revived it, seeded it from my archived posts, and will grow it with new content.
And for the dozen other “important” things, I’ll find some time – after the ones that really matter are done.
The hundreds of “urgent, though not important” ones will just have to wait. For a “later” that may never come.
That’s ok. Because if my time runs out any day, I’ll have been doing what truly matters… not obsessing over trivia.
Another year is almost dead.
But a new one will soon be born.
Like life itself, every new year offers an opportunity.
An opportunity to change, be better, different.
To focus again on what’s really important.
On what matters.