I have been trading and investing for many years and producing articles and education on this topic for years as well. Why? One crystal clear simple reason… To live the life I choose to live and help others do the same if they desire.
When I was 15 years old I experienced a life event that, in an instant, would change me forever. It created an unshakable awareness of how precious and short life is and how important it is to be truly present at all times and appreciate everything life has to offer. While my experience back when I was 15 years old was traumatic and scary so much good has come from it, and for that I am thankful. For one, being so present, aware, and appreciative each day and having freedom of time and choices in life has allowed me to live an amazing life with my son. You see, unfortunate events can lead to the most fortunate of outcomes…
In the diagram above, simply answer the questions with your dates. From the year you were born to today, you have lived a portion of your life story. How was it? Is it the story you wanted to live in every sense of the word? If the answer is yes, that’s great, well done! If not, why not? From today’s date to the year you will pass, your story hasn’t been written yet. What will you do with the time you have left?
The good news is, it’s your story; you’re the author and the pen is in your hand. While writing your story, keep in mind that your time is limited. I know of a man who has two jars and a bunch of marbles in his garage. He’s older now, but long ago he calculated how many Saturday’s he had left if he lived to age 85. Since then, each Saturday morning to start his weekend, he goes into his garage and takes a marble from one jar and moves it to the other for a visual reminder of the brevity of his life. As you can imagine, he is very focused on living an amazing and fulfilling life.
Your life story is created from countless choices you’ve made so far. Choices stem from our belief system so it’s at the level of beliefs that our choices are actually made. Belief systems are created through life experiences as we grow up, and this is where a big challenge lies. For example, most people will never live the life they want to live because they are afraid of going after it. They are afraid of failure and can’t handle all the little failures and challenges along the way. This is because most people look at failure completely wrong and backwards. Most people are afraid of failure in any part of life. This is because we all grow up conditioned to NOT make mistakes and this is very wrong.
In school and sports and everywhere else during our development years, perfection is always expected, which really suppresses growth as few will dare to move beyond their comfort zone due to a fear of failure. You have to understand that failure does not happen to you, it happens for you. It is a gift that offers the opportunity to grow. When you shift your mind and think this way you will smile with each failure, knowing that you have just identified a flaw that needs to be corrected, removed, or improved. Adversity is scary in the moment but it is always when we grow the most. Failure is only permanent when you allow it to be. Recognize how wonderful adversity and failure really is. When you live by a set of core values and unshakeable convictions you become stronger and less fearful. You see the life’s journey for what it is, an exciting marathon for which you control the rule book and roadmap. Again, you’re the author of your life story and the pen is in your hand.
I probably would have grown up looking at failure and challenges all wrong but I had a big life changing challenge forced upon me that forced me to either grow and thrive or sink. You never know how strong you really are until being strong is your only choice. Like many people, I experienced that at a young age. Never forget, if something doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you.
Here are a few words of wisdom to ponder:
If you ever find yourself in the middle of a bumpy road in life or you’re not living the life story you desire, stay encouraged. You will make it to the peak if you realize that the valley is not your permanent address.
Being challenged in life is inevitable, being defeated is a choice.
Never forget, to become a butterfly you must want to fly so bad that you are willing to give up being a caterpillar.
Growth and change always go hand in hand with failure and fear.
If you approach failure and challenges with a positive attitude, you will see how quickly you can use failure to achieve unthinkable success in every part of your life.
If you ever need a reminder of how short and precious life is, think of the marbles. Most importantly, appreciate every moment of your life, during the good times and the challenging ones. Focus on being present to loved ones most important in your life. Start writing and living the life story you choose. When you do or while you’re on your way, I would love to hear your story if you care to share, just email me.