There, I said it.
Now you know. Now you are in on the big secret.
Here's the thing: you are too.
"But Josh, I'm not dying!!"
Maybe not tomorrow, or in a month, or a year, or even 10 years. But, one fact remains: each and every day, you are one step closer to your physical existence ending.
Does that make you scared? Does that make you sad?
I still remember there was one time that I was making cold calls for my business, and I had a friend of mine ask me "how do you do it?" The aspect of talking to a stranger, to have someone judge you for a couple seconds was a little too much to bear for him. It's not the easiest thing in the world to reach out and have someone shit on you for a little bit, we're all conditioned against it. Admittedly, I still get a little nervous every single time I reach to pick up a phone.
My reply to him was simple - "I'm dying". He didnt' understand at first.
After my injury, I realised that this all ends. That this life one way or another comes to a conclusion, and that we only have so much time on Earth to be the person we dream of being, to reach the goals we've set out for ourselves, and to be with the people we love.
That means that there is only one resource that matters in this life. It's not money. It's not fame. It's the time that we have.
There is tremendous beauty in this. There is so much freedom. It takes away all fear.
We all go to the same place, it doens't matter if we are a billionaire, a president, a king. We end up in the same place.
Here's what I know changes the second you realise that you are going to die:
Everyone is on an equal playing field.
Everyone just uses their time differently.
If you decide to use your time better, to focus on the things that you dream of doing, you are going to be in a much better place, it's just inevitable.
You also begin to understand that people are fallible. Experts can be wrong (and often are), the leaders we have are also fallible and do what they think is best in the moment. We cannot fault people for being human. But, mistakes and fucking up are all part of the process. You are going to fail, get over it.
You stop wasting time on little trivialities.
You stop caring about what the news said, what the weather is like, or things that are completely out of your control. You are much slower to anger. Frankly, being in my position, I hardly if ever get angry or upset. I am on so much more of an even emotional keel.
You will start to look for the things that are in your control, and to do your best to control those variables. That means that you can control what you eat, how much you sleep, the people you spend time with, the projects that you work on, the skills that you learn, the introductions that you make, the work that you do, and many, many other things.
Hint: You cannot control others.
You become a happier overall person.
You are grateful for waking up in the morning. You are grateful for each breath you get to take, each step, and you see beauty in all the little things that most take for granted.
You value your relationships far more.
As a younger person, you may have disliked spending time with your parents. When you realise they one day will no longer be here, you value that time so much more. You go a little slower, you take your time. You enjoy your interactions, because you know just like your life, they end.
You stop pursuing money.
You pursue happiness. Money brings freedom, happiness is borne from freedom. Think about that for a few minutes.
You treat yourself better.
You eat better, you workout more. You realise that you want to be here as long as possible.
In addition to 2) You really stop caring about what others think about you.
This is the most freeing aspect of understanding that you will no longer be here one day - You are free to be the person that you want to be. This is beautiful.
I'm dying. You are too.
What are you going to do now that you know?