Everybody Dies, But Not Everyone Truly Lives [podcast 53]

I don’t know anything that reels you back in from your day to day thoughts like a funeral. Death is a part of life but nobody really wants to think about it. If you dwell on it too much you become sullen, dark and depressed. But “whoop there it is.” And its not just death, it’s the process. Its family. Its finances. It’s the future.

I went to a funeral this week and had time to reflect on a few thoughts. I want to share a few of them with you.

Everyone dies, but not everyone truly lives.

This week I attended a funeral of a really good man. He was the Man in a family of four elderly women. He was the one that drove them everywhere, fixed what was broken, cut the grass, took out the trash, and put up with their crap. If it wasn’t the cancer that got him, it was the women.

Funerals have a way of helping you with perpective. I saw that the kids that used to run around my father in laws house had kids of their own this time I was there. They were asking the same questions, searching for same answers. The meaning of life…

Funerals are interesting. You will see all the elements of your family and the human condition. Ecclesiastes says there is a time for everything under the sun. And you will see it.

a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, Ecc 3:4

1. By what age should you know what you want to do with your life?

2. Do you have to love your job?

3. If you achieved all of your life’s goals how would you feel?

4. Should you be focused on today or tomorrow?

By what age should you know what you want to do with your life?

Any moment now. This used to be a question the young asked. Now it’s a quandary for baby boomers. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that younger boomers have abandoned the American ideal of picking a job and sticking with it. Between the ages of 18 and 36, these boomers held an average of 9.6 jobs. That’s a lot of exploration. The wisdom of elders in all cultures seems to be this: There’s nothing to do with a life but live it. As Gandhi pointed out, “Almost anything you do will be insignificant, but it is very important that you do it.”

Do you have to love your job?

No. Love your children, your spouse and your country. Love your parents, your neighbor and your dog. Loving is too important an emotion to attach to the way you make a living. But it’s OK to strive for satisfaction. According to a recent Harris Poll, across America 59% of workers say they are extremely, somewhat or slightly satisfied with their jobs, but a depressing 33% feel as if they’ve reached a career dead end. If you’re among the latter and thinking about a new job, consider the fact that employees in small firms said they felt more engaged in their work than did their corporate counterparts.

What don’t you know, that you don’t know? It’s always the obstacles that we don’t even see coming that are the biggest challenges in life. Get in the habit of asking people that have been there and done it before for guidance.

Happiness / Peace of Mind

Are your “shoulds” getting in the way of your happiness? The desires of our ego are often in conflict with the emotions of our heart. You’ll always have what you want, if you want what you have.

If you achieved all of your life’s goals how would you feel?

How can you feel that along the way? The discipline of delayed gratification is one of the most powerful habits of successful individuals. But most actions we take are meant to elicit an emotion in the now. We’re happier striving for our goals when we let ourselves feel that which we want to feel when our outcome is achieved.

If you were dying, would you worry about this? We so easily lose perspective on what takes up our energy and focus. We’re all dying. Sometimes we need to remind ourselves of this to enjoy living.

Should you be focused on today or tomorrow?

Savor the present but don’t forget your future. Life is a balance of knowing when to enjoy the moment vs. when to plant seeds for tomorrow’s harvest.

The Hammer Story.

Quite of a few of my friends that listen to this show are around the same age as me, believe in the same God as me, want pretty much the same things out of this life. My message to you is to live. Don’t waste your time on negatives, toxic people, stupid people, never give someone the opportunity to waste your time.

Don’t envy, or feel sorry for yourself over what could have been. Be thankful for what you have right now. Who you are right now. Where you’ve been and what you have seen.

A lot of us are ungrateful when you think about it. Always seeking for more. Always unhappy. You ever try to give a gift to an ungrateful kid? Or how about an ungrateful girlfriend? The toy was old. The shoes were out of style. The diamond was too small. Remember that feeling?

Now think about God. What if He looked at us like we do that ungrateful person. Would He want to give you anything else? Of course He is God and His thoughts are higher than ours but you see where I am going?

Most people would agree that we have a lot to be thankful for. After all, many of us live a lifestyle full of conveniences. We live in comfortable homes, wear nice clothes, and have reliable transportation. We have no shortage of clean water or healthy food. We have access to quality healthcare and education, and basically live a good life with a lot of freedom, safety and security.
While it’s easy to take these wonderful blessings for granted—and sometimes get into the bad habit of focusing on what we don’t have—millions of people around the world live without the basic necessities of life.

For something to change in your life, one of two things has to happen: your life changes, or you do. Waiting for life to change is a pretty passive solution. When you’re stuck in a problem mentality you miss out on all the opportunities for solutions that are knocking on your door every day, simply because you don’t even hear them or see them.
Open your eyes to a gratitude practice and all of a sudden things start to fall into place for you and for your business. Being an entrepreneur means being proactive, not passive, so switch your mindset and see life change.

I see a friend of mine doing this online everyday. Tipping my hat to you Charlie.

2. Gratitude creates solutions

3. Gratitude is contagious

I speak a couple of languages but I don’t speak Whinese.

On a personal note, I have changed my online world a little. You hear the direction I took with this podcast. I changed black man with a gun into a online magazine. I got a whole bunch of great friends like you that have something to say and I wanted to show my gratitude and share the space I made for it. And it is ok if it fails. I have tried a lot of stuff in my life. I am ok with it all now. I’ve pissed off some people. I have done some folks wrong along the way of me growing. I feel horrible for it, hope they forgive me but not going to dwell on it or allow it to hinder me now. I didn’t always do the right thing. Say the right things. You?

But today is a new day. Not going to ruin it because of a bad yesterday.

You feel me?

Life is too short to live the same day twice.

I am even reviving Blanchardoutdoors.com website. Killing off Gunmovement.org, pulling that into black man with a gun. And I am going to try to find a church that wants me as its pastor. Even though I am still listening to God’s answer on that. Is it His will for me in this crazy time?

Its hard to hear him because of my own wants and desires are in there. But that is a different subject. Pray for me that I get ears to hear and eyes to see on that one. I’ll be praying for you, like the one starfish that got stuck on the beach with the incoming tide. I’ll throw you back into the water through prayer. I got you Lloyd and Cale.

Thank you.

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