Today is my birthday. It is a time for reflection. For the average North American male, I am pretty much at mid-life. I have also read a lot of articles where the individual gives a list of things they have learned after living a good portion of their life. Here’s mine. By no means is this an exhaustive list:
Life is Short, Don’t wait.
Before you know it, your middle age. That business you wanted to start, that trip you wanted to take, that book you wanted to write. It all seems too hard to do now. Well here’s the problem… If you don’t start you will never know. You don’t want to be sitting on your deathbed full of regrets. If you do, be like this guy…..
You have to stop being around negative people.
You have several people in your life (friends and probably some family), some are never going to be happy. You realize this fact after you have been around awhile. Limit your time with them. In a lot of cases, they will hate you for it. You will be thought as selfish and the one with the problem. Again life is too short. You need to be around like-minded people who build you up not tear you down or suck your soul….
There is never a good time to make a change.
Hate your job? But I will quit as soon as this big purchase has been paid off or as soon as my kid is out of college. The excuses can go on forever. As you get older you realize that time is more and more valuable (money used to be worth its weight in gold now it really worthless, well not really…). You have to make that change when you need to. There is always going to be fallout but it can be dealt with. Case in point, I wrote an article a little while ago that gives an example of this. Please read it, you will know what I mean.
Money won’t solve all your problems.
I am at a point in my life where I see that money is very important and looking toward your retirement years when you’re in your 20’s or 30’s are very important. However, it won’t solve all of your problems. For example, have you been working your ass off at the expensive of your relationships? Guess what, you might have your retirement cut in half when your neglected spouse files for divorce. I know it is an oversimplification but things may happen in your life that derails plans you made for the distant future. Keep your eye on the prize but as I tell my kids “be aware of your surroundings”. Don’t go through life as if you are alone because you’re not. If you are not care careful, you just might be.
Have that piece of pecan pie!
I threw this one in for fun. What I mean by this is to remember, life is supposed to be fun. If not, why are we living? My brother always likes to remind me of the Ben Franklin quote (I hope he said it, nope)….”Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy”. If we don’t temper our mostly serious existence with a little fun, it will be a long boring life! Now I am going to start enjoying more years!