As I stumbled sleepily into work, I ran into one of my colleagues and carried on the standard routine, superficial conversation. “Morning Jon, how we doing?” Jon flatly replied, “Oh you know, just another day…” Normally, I would have carried on without thinking twice about it, but as I continued through my normal routine of pouring myself a cup of coffee, strong enough to drag myself through the first three hours of work, I thought about it some more. How is that any way to “live?” ‘Just another day.’ Who wants to live ‘just another day,’ as if you’re counting down the days to death. Time is one of the most valuable resources we have. It’s not renewable. It can’t be rationed. You can’t get more. It can’t be made or lost, it can’t be bought or sold. It can only be enjoyed and made memorable. But yet, here I was, watching as my colleague, quietly succumbing to wasting it away in exchange for a much less valuable resource; money. Now, I, like anyone else, value money. I have aspirations of making lots of money, to support my family and to facilitate the things I want to do in life. No doubt, I couldn’t go to Argentina without money. But at what cost are you willing to get money?
The answer for my listless colleague is to spend 8-10 hours a day at a job that is uninspiring, stressful, and stagnant, leading to nothing more than repeating this endless cycle of ‘just another day’ until retirement, or worse, death. This casual, subtle comment was more than that; it was a reflection of the life that he was living… or the lack there of. This reminded myself of the reasons I decided to go to Argentina in the first place and all that I have to look forward to!
In his 2005 Stanford commencement speech, Steve Jobs left a lasting impression on the graduating class; discussing his pursuits at Apple, life and death, and his perspective on life. One of the topics he discusses is his battle with cancer and how that became a powerful tool in his life, “I could die tomorrow.” This was his reality for a period of his life and as we know today, cancer got the best of him. As he reflects on the tougher periods, he shares with the audience the days he would wake up, looks in the mirror and asks himself, “If today were my last day, would I want to do what I’m about to do.” This analogy is the perfect example of how valuable time is and why we should strive to live each day to its fullest. Explore your dreams, try new things, push yourself to the limit. As he concludes his speech, Steve Jobs leaves us with four parting words, “Stay hungry, stay foolish.” I try to continually remind myself of this in life. My trip to Argentina is one way for me to put these words into action.
As I walk down the stairs of my room, I have a poster that reads:
THIS IS YOUR LIFE. Find a passion and pursue it. Fall in love. Dream big. Drink wine,
eat great food, and spend quality time with good friends. Laugh everyday. Believe in
magic. Tell Stories. Reminisce about the good old days but look with optimism to the
future. Travel often. Learn more. Be creative. Spend time with people you admire.
Seize opportunities when they reveal themselves. Love with all your heart. Never give
up. Do what you love. Be true to who you are. Make time to enjoy the simple things in
life. Spend time with family. Forgive even when it’s hard. Smile often. Be grateful. BE
THE CHANGE YOU WISH TO SEE IN THE WORLD. Follow your dreams. Try new
things. Work hard. Don’t count the minutes count the laughs. Embrace change. Trust
in yourself. Be thankful. Be nice to everyone. Be happy. Live for today. And above all…
MAKE EVERY MOMENT COUNT.
I use it as a reminder of what it’s all about. Don’t let today be ‘just another day.’