posted on: February 28, 2020
author: Anthony Pellegrino
Ambition itself seems to come effortlessly. It isn’t very challenging to dream big.
The real challenge comes in the motivation to actualize those ambitions. Putting your money where your mouth is is often where most of us run into some roadblocks.
The dream is there, but the motivation is difficult to maintain.
When the going gets tough, we get going with excuses and lots of them at that.
Oh, I’ll do it tomorrow.
Next time I’ll go extra hard to make up for today.
I’ll run an extra mile later so I can relax now.
Whatever it may be, these excuses seem to make residence in our minds just as effortlessly as runaway ambitions do.
Ultimately, these excuses are within the domain of your mindset. If your mindset isn’t primed for success, then these excuses will propagate in your mind like weeds in an unkempt garden.
But what is the best way to prime your mindset for success?
You must meditate on your mortality to prime and embolden a mindset equipped for massive success.
Too morbid for you?
I get it.
Like most people, you don’t relish the thought of your inevitable death.
But here’s the thing.
Your life really gets put into perspective when you think about your death and the finality that it entails.
It doesn’t matter what your belief system is either. You may or may not believe in some form of afterlife, but what we can all agree on, what cannot be disputed is the fact that once you’re dead, you’re dead.
Your life on Earth will be over, and nothing else can be completed or accomplished.
Along these lines, contemplating your mortality will remind you of your limited time here as a human being.
Time is of the essence, as every second is a second closer to death.
You don’t have time for excuses, not with the right perspective anyway.
It may be scary to think about death, but few things have quite the impact and power on your motivation than your mortality.
In fact, this idea is nothing new.
The Ancient Stoics encouraged regular contemplation on death for this very reason.
Marcus Aurelius once said:
“Let each thing you would do, say or intend be like that of a dying person.”
Next time you find yourself full of excuses rather than a success-focused, growth mindset, meditate on your mortality. Nothing else will put things in the best perspective, especially when it comes to regrets.
For example, let’s say you have a daily practice routine for whatever sport you may play but are thinking of skipping it.
With a mortality focused perspective, is this really something you won’t regret? Or will you be disappointed in yourself?
Is a moment of laziness really the act of a dying man, as Marcus Aurelius would say?
We give in to these excuses largely because we think that they don’t matter. That’s it’s not that big of a deal to cheat yourself here and there. But that means you cheated yourself out of a day of growth that, quite frankly, you’re never going to get back.
Time is your most valuable resource, and once it’s gone, it’s gone.
Therefore, regular meditation of your mortality will embolden your mindset, because it will dispel any illusions that giving into an excuse doesn’t really matter.
It always matters, no matter how small it may seem. Death doesn’t take a cheat day. It’s always marching towards you, closer and closer. It will come for you regardless of what you have or haven’t accomplished with your life.
Have you seized the day, or let it slip? Have you made your mark on the world, or will you soon be forgotten?
It’s all the same for death.
But it’s not all the same for us.
It is very possible to forge a life well lived with time well spent. It just can’t be done without this regular contemplation of death. Nothing good will happen if we pretend as if we’ll never die, that’s for sure.
As Marcus Aurelius said:
“Don’t behave as if you are destined to live forever. What’s fated hangs over you. As long as you live and while you can, become good now.”
Live every day as if it’s your last, and you’ll find that you’ll never be short on or waste your time ever again.
Anthony Pellegrino is a freelance journalist, writer, and content marketing strategist. He is currently studying to get his B.A. in Philosophy at Fort Hays State University. He works as contributor to Pulse Magazine and as a freelance content creator for several marketing agencies and brands. His writing is focused on philosophy of mind, metaphysics, politics, everyday life, and content marketing.
Learn more about the author: http://tonyp.press