(Editor’s Note: This is a guest post written by Jesse Eldredge. Jesse is a good friend of mine who’s blog, It’s a Vibe, gave me the courage to begin my blogging practice. Besides blogging Jesse runs a content development agency, Eldridge Brand Management, where he helps local business’s grow their brand. Jesse is one of the most positive and uplifting people I’ve been around, and I know you’ll get a lot out of this post. Be sure to check our his blog for more inspiration and connect with him on Twitter @RosewoodRoos.)

 

Life is fragile. Yet here we are, walking around as if we’ll get to experience life someday after we put in our time and earn a better spot.

 

I don’t want to start off 2017 with a depressing question. Rather, I want this question to spark some thought and motivation for you:

What would this year look like for you if you found out that you only had one more year to live?

This was it. 2017. Your last year to experience life.

I began thinking about this question after I watched the movie, “Bucket List,” starring Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman. In the movie these two play the roles of Edward and Carter, two very different men, both diagnosed with terminal lung caner. They decide to make a bucket list and set out to do things they had always wanted to do their whole lives.

It’s the same thing every year, right? We consider all these things that we want to do in the new year. Often times, we set the same goals or resolutions that we set for ourselves last year. We think to ourselves, THIS is the year that I’m going to stick to this new habit. We all know what happens next. Three weeks go by and we’re back to living the same way we were living last year.

I think this happens for several reasons. One, forming new habits is not easy. Experts say that it takes roughly 21 days to form a new habit. Second, we have a lot going on. We have jobs to perform in, social lives to maintain, families to take care of. Third, we like being comfortable. Trying a new diet, a new workout regimen, a new daily routine is not very comfortable. It throws us off. We don’t like it.

So what happens next? We settle back into our comfortable little lives. We hit the snooze button a few more times. That new gym membership? L O L. We don’t have time for the gym. The week is reserved for work. The weekends are for catching up on sleep or maybe our favorite TV shows that we missed. And what do we get? An average, dare I say boring life.

If you haven’t picked up on it yet, I’m frustrated. I’m frustrated because as I looked back on 2016 it became very clear to me that I had settled. I did what was comfortable for me. I waited for doors to open. If something didn’t work out I gave up on it. As I looked around I realized that so many of us are settling. We chalk it up as, “This is life. This is the way it is.”

Is it though? Is this really it? Stuck in a 9 to 5? More like 7 to 6 these days. No time to do the things that fulfill us. No time to work on ourselves. No time to pursue the passions that spark a fire inside of us. We’ll “get to it someday when we have more time and resources.”

I don’t know. It just sounds like a bunch of excuses to me. I hate to see us playing down to this low level stuff, I know we can do better. That’s why I’m writing this post for you guys. That’s why I posed such a terrible question that no one wants to think about. We have to find a way to make this real. We aren’t getting any younger. And yes, while some of us have so much life in front of us, we really don’t know. Life is fragile. Yet here we are, walking around as if we’ll get to experience life someday after we put in our time and earn a better spot.

Think about what new habits you need to form. Maybe you have some old habits that you need to change. Perhaps you’ve always wanted to work for yourself. There could be some relationships that need mending, or a career change. Maybe you’d like to read more. Whatever it is for you, write it down. This year, make it happen.

This year, 2017, let’s stop making excuses. Let’s stop putting it off. Let’s stop settling for average. Let’s get uncomfortable. Let’s put ourselves out there as much as possible. As Gary Vaynerchuk says, “One life.” We only get one shot. Why let ourselves get stuck somewhere we don’t want to be? Why settle just because “this is just the way it is?”

Live 2017 as if this is your last year here on earth. It’s a beautiful world. Be who you were meant to be in 2017. Don’t let any negativity bring you down. Be a source of light to everyone you come across. There’s so much more to life and most of us, including myself, aren’t even scratching the surface.

Let’s do better. 2017 is our year, friends. Let’s do this. Hopefully this post will motivate some of you to go all in. Make the necessary changes in your life even if they’re not very comfortable, and go hard! No more putting it off. It’s our time.

– Jesse Eldredge