Life is short. I’m sure there’s a memory from your past that seems like it was just yesterday, but was years ago. Life and opportunities pass you by quickly and before we know it, we’re battling regret. We tell our self we’ll have more time to do all the things we want to do as a way to put off the hard work it takes to make big changes.
At some point in your life, you will have to make a decision. For some—like myself—that decision is forced upon us through difficult circumstances. My life was falling apart in 2011. I was on a friend’s living room floor crying my eyes out. After two days of crying, I made the decision to stop putting off doing something about the kind of life I wanted to live.
There are four life-changing decisions every guy must make at some point in his life to live the kind of life he truly wishes to live. There are many more than four, but I tried to cover some major life areas. No man is guaranteed a moment past right now. My hope is you decide today to take action and tackle the big changes you want to make in your life.
- Choosing love over feelings. Most of us will have a serious relationship at some point in our lives. Making a relationship work requires a lot of things, but it starts with a foundation of true love. When we understand that love isn’t a feeling—it’s a decision we must make every day through the actions we take—we can make love stand the test of time. Many relationships end because we confuse feelings as the only way to tell love. If we just go by our feelings, love and our relationships won’t last very long.
- Work that you love or hate. The average workweek is now 47 hours according to a recent study by Gallup. The Washington Post tells us that 13% of us enjoy or get fulfillment from the work that we do. 47 hours is a lot of hours to spend doing something that makes you miserable, and it will have an effect on every other area of our lives. Life is too short to spend 47 hours of each week doing something that we hate. Our economy is not the greatest, but there are still opportunities to find or create work that you love. If you start today, you can get closer to changing how you spend your 47 hours each week.
- Getting and staying healthy. Our health is important—I don’t need to give you all the stats. I was overweight for most of my life. Once I started getting serious about what I ate, exercising regularly, and making smart choices, my self-confidence increased. I started to feel good about what I thought about myself, which helped me continue to make changes in other areas of my life.
- Living instead of existing. Truly living doesn’t mean you’re skydiving every day or climbing mountains. It means you don’t settle. It means you don’t get complacent in a “good enough” life when you know that you’re destined for greatness. It means you live your life fully present enjoying and learning from every moment along the way.
My life today feels surreal. I wake up and get to write while enjoying an ocean view from my home on Maui, Hawaii. Hawaii may not be your dream. Writing may not be your dream, but you do have a dream you would love to make your reality. If you work hard to live that dream–when you achieve it–life will be good.
Making changes isn’t easy and many that try quit before they can make progress. I have been there many times. It’s not easy, and it will take time, but it’s important. You can live every day doing the things that are important you. And, you can live each day with someone you love. You have a choice to make.
Are you living or existing?
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Photo: Flickr/ Lee_Salford