I just got back from an intense and inspiring weekend retreat called Entrepreneurs Awakening led by my friends Michael Costuros and Bryan Bayer. One of the questions posed over the weekend was both simple and profound:
If you only had one year to live, how would you spend it?
Then we journaled for 10 minutes or so, just writing free form what came up for us. Sitting outside under the warm glow of the California sun, I reflected for a moment and this is what came up:
A Year to Live
With one year left to live, I would spend more time with my family, take a trip to Bali together and reinitiate contact with friends I’ve fallen out of touch with along the way.
With a year to live, I would underwrite the cost of giving away Lifestyle Entrepreneur to thousands of people with a new prologue explaining the circumstances and encouraging others to live with the same ferocity and passion, as if they were in the same situation.
I’d jump on the international travel circuit for a month with my friends Jim, Andy, Andrew and Alex and the Project Rockstar crew of years past, and I’d approach every beautiful woman I saw with the thought constantly in mind that I literally have nothing to lose.
I would give talks at my old high school and college to inspire the next generation and spend time with my favorite teachers. I’d have dinner with my old professor Joseph Lough and discuss the history of time, the Chicago school of economics and the current global political economy.
Then I’d travel through China and Asia, remembering and learning more Chinese and rocking out at KTV bars at night singing pop songs in Mandarin and downing Tsingtaos
I’d get my old band Harsh Krieger back together and play a reunion show.
I’d spend a few weeks in Stockholm with my dear friend Elena and go drink wine with my old business partner Rachel.
Then I’d have my man Gabe (captain for Virgin America) fly me into space and take a last look at the world below before I shed this mortal coil.
I’d eat at all the Michelin star restaurants and complete a century ride (100 miles) on my bike.
And when it was all over, I’d die happy surrounded by people I love.
What is Missing From the List?
When I finished writing and looked back over the list, I noticed right away that work and career pursuits were nowhere to be found.
It’s funny how in the face of death, all the career planning, long-term thinking and planning just doesn’t mean a thing. The focus was entirely on experiences and spending time with friends and family.
To me, this is THE perfect clarifying question for how to determine what your interests and passions are.
What Would You Do?
I’m curious about what you would do if you only had a year to live. What would fill your days and hours? How would you spend you last remaining precious time and who would you spend it with?
Think about it for a moment. Try to really go there and reach deep.
When you answer the question fully and authentically, I’m guessing you’ll have a few moments of clarity about your priorities and what you could begin to change to live out these dreams now – sooner than planned and while you do still have your health.
Let me know below…