Monday. Smooth 98.1
Welcome to smooth-life on smooth 98.1 FM. Today i want to talk about life. Because no one has lived before, and there is this general assumption that we all know what life is all about. And as we get older and older, this assumption grows to become a terrible pride that blinds us to the contents of truth and legitimacy, but opens us up to our boundaries set by our personal preferences, personal opinions, sentiments, and prejudices. Particularly between age 13 to the late 40s. We just seem to assume control and balance and govern our short lives with the limited content of our individual experiences.
You really cannot jump into the swimming pool and decide that you will swim by just folding your hands and legs blowing a whistle. If you insist on doing so, no one will stop you actually. You will have your way, except that the end of your way will be death. If you insist on swimming on your own terms, you will drown on your own terms. There’s a protocol of swimming. And if you choose to ignore that protocol in exchange for your way, you will indeed have your way, but you will soon become a victim of the protocol you ignored. So is life. Billions have come and gone, and most have left unnoticed. The difference is always that people forget that there is always a route to every destination. And because you don’t know the route to a particular one, does not deny its existence; neither does your ignorance of it give you the right to assume. Assumption is the lowest level of knowledge and its twin is guessing. In life, it is a terrible assumption to hope you are correct; you got to know. You don’t just hope, you know. Many have hope they knew, only to get to a particular age and realize they knew nothing. Nothing!
I have to share with you the most common regrets of people dying. See, People live this life all focused on the wrong things, only to get to a particular age, particularly on the dying bed, only to realize they would have done it differently. What would your biggest regret be if this was your last day of life? Trust me, you won’t miss sex, parties, clubbing, clothes, boys, girls, fame, cars and all the trappings of life that determine value for many. Most will need to be on the dying bed before they can fully appreciate life in its essence. On that bed, nothing mundane makes sense. You cannot believe the phenomenal clarity of vision that people gain at the end of their lives. True meaning and fulfilment will elude so many simply because they did not invest in the kind of self-education that empowers them to learn wisdom from those who have gone ahead. In life, there are no rewind buttons, just play. Life is a single shot, and by the time you know what to call it, you will be neck deep in it and you cannot press rewind. I’ll share with you the top four regrets of the dying revealed by a study of over 500 people at different times on the dying bed when asked what they would wish they had done differently. The first is, “I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.” That’s how most of us live life, isn’t it? This was the most common regret of all. When people realise that their life is almost over and look back clearly on it, it is easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled. Most people had not honoured even a half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they had made, or not made. There is a freedom and maturity that is easily achieved on the dying bed, except that it came too late to use the freedom effectively. The second is, “I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.” Most people will have to be on the dying bed or get close to it before they can fully appreciate the truth that they probably pursued their productivity all their lives at the expense of the meaningful relationships and time with family that only comes from a respect for the balance of fun-times, leisure, health and serious exchange. Generally, most people would not truly realise the full benefits of their God-given relationships until their dying weeks. Many had become so caught up in their own lives that they had let golden friendships slip by over the years. Most die with the deep regrets that come from not giving relationships the time and effort that they deserved. Understand this wisdom: That Hard work is not a necessary pathway to peace and progress. Over the years, and year in, year out, you wouldn’t know, but there are thousands dying all over the world who deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence. The third is: “I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.” Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with others. As a result, they settled for a mediocre existence and never became who they were truly capable of becoming. Many developed illnesses relating to the bitterness, unforgiveness and resentment they carried as a result. The truth of your conscience as guided by the standards of wisdom are what you owe your world, not conformity. Variation is a right and a duty as long as it is on the foundation of truth. The fourth is: “I wish that I had let myself be happier.” This is a surprisingly common one. Many did not realise until the end that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. The so-called ‘comfort’ of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their physical lives. Fear of change had them pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content, when deep within, they longed to laugh properly, play more and reach out more.” It’s called life; and this one is yours. No one else has your kind. You will never bump into yourself on the side walk. Your life will never be lived by anyone else. What’s your greatest regret so far, and what will you set out to achieve or change before you die? This is what we should ask. And the answer is what we must do.