photo by mandj98
What would you be doing today if you believed you were never going to die?
I know I would be doing exactly as I am doing today… finalising Frank’s tax records to send to our accountant, interspersed with writing this post, and I just went for a short walk, leaving Frank slaving at the kitchen table going through receipts. Because I do believe I’m never going to die, and this happens to be what I get the urge to do today.
When I first started seeing my lifespan this way, in 1986, at the age of 33, I realised that lots of the things I had been doing were motivated by thinking time was running out. In my twenties, when I was working full-time, I’d get up early on weekends to pack lots in—”we get back what we put in!” I thought. (I still think that, but would apply the idea differently, now.)
I thought I had to do lots to have an interesting life, and therefore feel satisfaction. Needless to say, it didn’t work.
Also, I remember thinking I wanted to create a lot of memories I could reflect upon when I was old—I thought that when I became frail and elderly, I would want to have lots of good memories to keep me company.
Nowadays, I know about being in present time and following intuition, and I firmly believe these are what lead to satisfaction in life.
Many of us are finding ways to be right in the present moment, for example by meditating, getting into our creative flow, and being in moments of joy with loved ones.
Once our attention is in the present moment, we can tune in to our intuitive prompts and follow them, if we want. To get better at this skill, we can practise choosing intuitively which way to drive home, and work up to the big things, which can include making interesting plans and building something up (a business, a castle, a blog).
We can’t ever access intuition though, if our attention is not in the present, and it is not in the present if we are making decisions with regard to some imagined future restriction. There’s a big difference between building a business because it is exciting and creative for us, and because we feel we need to store nuts away for our inevitable decline.
Making the most of time
Doing things because of the age we are and will be, being busy because we might miss out on things, acting from consideration of future restrictions, and trying to create great memories, are not being in present time.
Therefore, doing them makes it impossible to follow intuition, and gain the satisfaction that comes from doing so, no matter how much they are dressed up to be “making the most of life”.
Also, using our imagined possible imminent demise for trying to enhance life is being WAY out of present time. It is manipulating how we feel and deciding what to do from the ego, not the intuition.
Anyway, why try to make the most of our time when time is not running out? There is only the present moment, and it is eternal—you can only slip into it when you forget about time.
What if our intuition is saying to stay in bed all day? If we are thinking “life is short” and that we need to make the best use of what time we have, we will force ourselves to get up and at it!
Maybe if we had stayed in bed all day, in this example, we might have had a fantastic idea, or got inspiration for solving a problem, or simply got some physical rest we needed.
(I’d suggest here that if we have responsibilities to dependents, intuition won’t lead us to desert them. It might lead us to change how we operate, if that’s what we need to do.)
But if we are in “making the best use of our limited time” mode, we won’t ever know what might have been. If we constantly do (or don’t do) things because we are concerned about time running out, we never find out how we can stop wasting it. Intuitive promptings simply don’t know about future limitations, which are invented by our busy minds.
If we believe we are never going to die, or grow old, we are free to explore what satisfies us, without that edgy feeling of time running out. It brings us totally into the present moment in a magical way. We never feel we are missing out on anything, so can explore exactly where we are right now.
* * *
What do you think about this? How did you feel about the question at the start?