A year ago I read this book and I started an experiment in conscious living. I set an imaginary last day of my life. Then I tried to live each day as if I would expire on the imaginary death date I had set.
I'll grant you it is not a very original idea. Tim McGraw even popularized it a while back with his catchy tune "Live Like You Were Dying".
I designed my own experiment because I didn't entirely agree with everything the author proposed.
I can be an independent thinker, sometimes.
So I made plans and I took notes as I practiced life before death.
**FAMILY!!! Do not be alarmed. I was not then, nor am I now, depressed. And while I have very little control ultimately, I fully intend to live long enough to embarrass my greatgrandchildren, or at least enjoy baby food with them. End of parenthetical statement**
Here is what I learned about having a deadline (pun intended):
- It did NOT motivate me to exercise more, or to become a better homemaker, or to build wealth. I did NOT master a second language, nor did I become more organized or start a part-time business of my own. I originally thought that it might help me with each of these things, and I did make half-hearted movements toward each of these things (well, I thought about doing some of them anyway) but apparently my values lie elsewhere.
- It DID help me behave more thoughtfully. I tried to be response-able and kind. I noticed goodness, and I tried to share my observations with others when it seemed helpful. I wanted desperately to sleep by the ocean and stand on the rim of the Grand Canyon, so I made both of those things happen. I hugged my beloveds and told them "I love you". I listened. I laughed. I planted vegetables and flowers. I made stuff, if not art.
And I'm not even close to done yet.
Watch for more posts about Experimenting With Your Life.