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If you were to die tomorrow, did you lead the life you wanted to live?

Discussion in 'Tilted Life and Sexuality' started by cynthetiq, Jul 26, 2012.

  1. cynthetiq

    cynthetiq Administrator Staff Member Donor

    Location:
    New York City
    This is a question that I asked my wife after she recovered from her tumor surgery. She wept and answered she had not lived the life that she wanted to. So I offered to let her live that life, take money and time to alter that life to your wants. To her it's so massive she can't even begin.

    It's a very simple question: If you died tomorrow, did you lead the life you wanted to live?

    Yes or no, and why.

    If you answer is no, what are you doing to try to make it the life you want to live?

    I am living the life I want to live. I construct it very carefully and walk the path that I talk about wanting to walk. There is nothing more important to me than having the least amount of regrets. I won't live a perfect life, but I will strive to get as close to what I want based on what access to resources I have. It is so important to me to live the lifestyle I chose to live with as much heart and exuberance as I can muster.
     
  2. Plan9

    Plan9 Standing in the Door Donor

    Location:
    This Island Earth
    No.

    Life is a Choose Your Own Adventure story that you can't reread. It would follow that a fair number of people made choices that they regret.

    I think life is too short for anyone with a Type A brain to claim to be satisfied with its outcome. We can only choose so many paths, leaving countless others unexplored. Locations, hobbies, partners, friends, education, careers, etc. That muscle car you should have splurged on. That girl you should have fucked in your honors seminar. That guy you should have just punched in the face. There are many paths that I've been denied based on the previous choices (ignorant or purposeful) I've made in my life, many paths that I had to turn away from because of other priorities. Grass-is-greener crap? Maybe, but if the journey is the goal, the grass isn't nearly as important. I'm not all curled up in a ball crying my eyes out about how horrible my life has been, but I don't know if I'll breathe my last breath on Earth going, "Well, that went as planned. Never did climb Everest, though."

    I think a healthy amount of regret is a necessity for anybody that wants to push themselves to a new level. It prevents you from becoming complacent, content... I don't know if those are the right words. Fear, discipline, something. I believe George Eliot said it best in Middlemarch: "With memory set smarting like a reopened wound, a man's past is not simply a dead history, an outworn preparation of the present: it is not a repented error shaken loose from the life: it is a still quivering part of himself, bringing shudders and bitter flavors and the tinglings of a merited shame."

    Where we came from leads to where we are now. I've fucked up a lot of things in life. Every day I am reminded of it. I've tried hard to fix them. As such, I can't really agree with Lynyrd Skynyrd's mama's goal in that Simple Man song: I'm not going to be satisfied. I want to stay hungry.

    Don't know if any of that makes sense.
     
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2012
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  3. cynthetiq

    cynthetiq Administrator Staff Member Donor

    Location:
    New York City
    I'm by no means content. I don't imply that by "living the life you want to live" that one is content with their lives. I guess that it can mean that to some.

    I am always hungry. I am always trying to figure out what the next thing is going to be.
     
  4. Plan9

    Plan9 Standing in the Door Donor

    Location:
    This Island Earth
    Yeah, I didn't really say what I wanted to say. Maybe somebody else can translate or has a similar philosophy on the topic.

    Or maybe I'm just a douchebag with a lot of ghosts on his back.
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2012
  5. Jove

    Jove Slightly Tilted

    Location:
    Michigan
    No.

    I want to travel around the world, participate in a marathon, triathlon, learn several languages, learn a martial art, learn how to shoot a gun/archery, and read all the books. The problem is time and funds.

    All the things listed above will just have to transfer over to the next life; if I remember my past life in the next life; otherwise I won't care because I will be dead.
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2012
  6. Plan9

    Plan9 Standing in the Door Donor

    Location:
    This Island Earth
    Ah, yeah... that's what I should have said. Means and opportunity. Despite the common cliche, money actually can buy you happiness.

    The thousands of dollars and thousands of hours I spent on martial arts and shooting sports aren't something everybody can do.

    And, hell, I'm not even happy with the amount of money and time I can pour into those things. I always want to do more.
     
  7. snowy

    snowy so kawaii Staff Member Donor

    Yes. It isn't what I pictured it would be, but I'm going the general direction I'd like to be going, I have a wonderful husband, I have a happy marriage, and I have a wonderful family who supports me and loves me. I would like to travel more, and thus I am budgeting more for that and reprioritizing. I'm actually really, really happy with where I'm at in life right now. Graduate school is exciting, interesting, and I'm making new friends in my cohort.

    Things are good.
     
  8. Baraka_Guru

    Baraka_Guru Möderätor Staff Member Donor

    Location:
    Toronto
    I struggle with this a lot.

    A part of me thinks that I've been missing out (terribly) on what's "out there."

    Another part of me wants to finally look at what's under my nose to find contentment.

    I haven't chosen. I'm a tragic fence-sitter. I have difficulties making decisions. I have difficulties understanding myself. I'm not living up to my potential by any means.

    I fear failure. I fear success.

    I'm stuck in a kind of limbo of my own devising.
     
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  9. Cayvmann

    Cayvmann Very Tilted

    No, but I don't always know what I want to do anyway. I have regrets, and am trying to keep from having too many more.

    If I can get my daughter through school and out into the world, fairly happy, then I'll consider most of the other regrets to be minor.
     
  10. martian

    martian Server Monkey Staff Member

    Location:
    Mars
    The problem I have with this question is that it posits that there's one right choice. There's a "right" way for me to live my life, and any way that isn't the "right" way is wrong and a waste. I object to that premise, even when I get to decide what "right" is.

    I'm pleased with where I am right now, and where I'm going. I accept that I am the principal agent of my own future. It's not all me, but my choices more then anything define who I am, and who I will become. I haven't accomplished everything I want to accomplish, and I certainly haven't lived a glamourous life. Should I die tomorrow I will regret not having had a longer span of time to leave my mark on the world. But yes, I'm happy with who I am and where I'm going. And I'm happy with where I've been, because that's what lead me to become who I am now.

    So I think that answers the question. Maybe.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  11. cynthetiq

    cynthetiq Administrator Staff Member Donor

    Location:
    New York City
    I don't think there's a right way.

    There's the way YOU want to shaped by your values, morals, desires, wants, and needs.
     
  12. Indigo Kid

    Indigo Kid Getting Tilted

    This is a great question & post. And the responses are so interesting and worth a read. How many people can say they planned their life and it has followed the right course YOU wanted? Not many.

    On the other hand , how many people can say they didn't plan too well - but they're happy with the way life is for them now? It 's worth asking and listening to our friends here regarding this "life question".

    For me personally I have found that my younger grandiose life plans didn't go the way I thought they would. And yet, I've been living a great life because I tend to be of a Zen mind and accept what comes my way & have tried to make it work or learn from the journey i.e. task, job (whatever). We do have the ability to direct our minds and actions but sometimes Life sends a "curve ball" directly at our head and we've gotta duck or run. Or try to bash that ball.
     
  13. clarksdale

    clarksdale Vertical

    Location:
    Minnesota
    you just can't do everything...you can't try all the professions...take all the classes...play all the instruments...love all the people and have sex with them...often you have to pick between two good things and then wonder if you made the right choice. i've had a great time, but i certainly have regrets and wonderment.

    i just read the springsteen profile in the 7/30 new yorker (awesome piece of writing) in which he talks about how his dissatisfaction has fed his creativity and growth..."You think, I don't like anything I"m seeing, I don't like anything I'm doing, but I need to change myself, I need to transform myself. I do not know a single artist who does not run on that fuel..."

    it is a cliche, but don't waste time thinking about the past, there is only today and you can do whatever you want to do with it. yes, you might just die tomorrow.
     
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  14. PonyPotato

    PonyPotato Very Tilted Donor

    Location:
    Columbus, OH
    If I died tomorrow, I believe I could die satisfied if I defined my life by my educational and professional journey. I have worn many hats, found my passion/ideal career, and I am working (hard) to make it a reality. I have taken some detours along the way, but all of them have made a definitive contribution to who I am and where I am going - if I hadn't made those detours, I likely wouldn't be pursuing this career choice and might be making money, but probably in a capacity that didn't make me very happy.

    If I defined my life by my personal journey and personal relationships, though, that's where I feel a deep sense of dissatisfaction so far. I have loved, yes, but not significantly for quite a few years. I am still discovering myself when it comes to my personal life - figuring out what my needs are, what my wants are, and learning how to be a good participant in a serious relationship. I would love to have kids someday, but I'd like to be in a relationship that would facilitate that first.. and I've likely made some missteps on the way to that goal along the way. As such, it may never happen, and I am struggling a little bit to come to terms with that. My priorities have changed over the years, but I consistently come back to solitude and reflection and regret or dissatisfaction. It keeps me moving forward in my professional life, at least, but somehow I feel like the world isn't as wide open to me anymore in personal arena. As more professional opportunities come available, the personal opportunities become fewer in number and, potentially, less desirable. It's a pain to grapple with sometimes.

    I do consider the past routinely so that I can ensure I have learned from it. I try not to second guess my decisions, but I do consider my mistakes and challenge myself to try something different "next time."
     
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  15. Definitely I would have said yes up to a few years ago. But lately, no. I'm trying to grasp what has changed. I want more than I have now. But I don't have less (not limited to possessions) than I did then. I am struggling to answer why there is now a difference. Have my expectations changed so dramatically? Am I actively avoiding accepting where I am in life? I see others in their late 50s 'give up' and accept their life as it is. I refuse to do that. I absolutely refuse.
     
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  16. KirStang

    KirStang Something Patriotic.

    Yes. I've definitely traveled the road I wanted take.
     
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  17. Plan9

    Plan9 Standing in the Door Donor

    Location:
    This Island Earth
    Wait... you got those MOLLE grid implants all over your body? Wow, I'm happy for you, Modular Man.
     
  18. AlterMoose

    AlterMoose Slightly Tilted

    Location:
    Pangaea
    I am living the life I was made for. I laugh often, I love wildly. I have a good home, a wife who loves me, two amazing sons. I cook good food; I play, feel, and breathe music. A few things I have not done, or done yet. I have never lived alone. Never had a boyfriend. Never seen Scotland or Ireland. Never been licensed to perform marriages or other spiritual rites and ceremonies. I do hope to be in a band again someday. I may carry a regret or two to my deathbed, but certainly not into whatever life waits after this one. I live this life; I thank God for it; I am happy in it.
     
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  19. Stan

    Stan Resident Dumbass Donor

    Location:
    Colorado
    There's a fine line between giving up and making peace with reality. I'm generally happy with where I am in life. Jessica Alba won't return my calls and I don't own a Ferrari; but things are generally pretty good. Taking the time to "smell the roses" is important, too.
     
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  20. cynthetiq

    cynthetiq Administrator Staff Member Donor

    Location:
    New York City
    Weird. I found out yesterday someone I know is friends with Jessica's husband.