MY FRIEND and former workmate phoned me to inform me that a former colleague of ours had died. I felt bad because this was a person I used to share an office with.
We used to laugh and sometimes give each other serious advice on life issues. For a moment I thought about the many friends and loved ones that have gone too soon.
And whenever I think of these beautiful souls, I am always reminded that I am not still alive because I am better or cleverer than those who have passed away. I am alive because I owe it to all my departed loved ones to live my life to the fullest.
I am alive because God is sparing me for a purpose and I intend to use my talents, inherent abilities, knowledge and experience to contribute to leaving this world better than I found it.
I just want to take this moment to encourage you to live your life while you still have a chance to do so.
It does not matter how you look, where you live, what you do or how much money you make. You need to enjoy every moment, even the less than ideal ones.
You need to do this because we are not promised tomorrow; soon this life will be over. Before we know it, weâ€™ll be six feet under and all these simple pleasures we take for granted, like feeling the breeze across our faces or watching our loved ones laugh or seeing the sun come up, will be things of the past.
Spending a lot of time with my grandmother, I have come to learn that generally, the things we value most when we are in our 20s, 30s and 40s become the things we value least as we near the end of our lives.
All those things that we currently take for granted like deep human connections, random acts of kindness, being in the best physical condition, excelling in our work, creating a legacy and carving out time each new day to work on ourselves so that the best within us shines, will in the end reveal themselves to be the most valuable.
I am always guilty that my grandmother always calls me no matter which part of the country I visit just to find out how I am.
Mostly, I find that she spends a lot more airtime on me than I do on her. She has appreciated the importance of knowing that all her loved ones are alive and okay.
She would rather spend whatever little she has on airtime, just so she can hear the voices of her children, grandchildren as well as great-grandchildren.
I remember when my aunt was dying, on her deathbed she talked of the many words she wished she had said to me, the many things she wished she had done.
Then I thought of the fact that on our deathbeds, no one wishes they had more money in their bank accounts or a bigger car sitting in the driveway. Instead, as we take our last few breaths, we wish that we had lived a life that was courageous, authentic and highly loving.
As we spend the best days of our lives chasing things like fame and fortune, letâ€™s also think of the important things of life.
Like our friends and loved ones, our service to the community, our responsibilities at church and most importantly living a life that is true. In the end, we need to look back to our lives and have a deep sigh of relief with the courage to say â€œI lived my life to the fullestâ€. I wish you all the best in life.
The author is a writer, motivational speaker and behaviour change activist.