I’m sure you all have noticed that recently I’ve been really into discussing what it means to truly live– not just go through the motions, but to really live life to the fullest. Doing more than simply existing is important to me and I make it a big focus of mine. Ever since I completely turned around my outlook on life and became one of those annoying always-optimistic, life-is-so-beautiful people, I’ve tried to make a conscious effort to put life first.
Obviously school and work are top priorities, but you can’t let them consume you. They do not define you and they are not your entire life. If you ask me to dinner, I will always say yes and make time for you. If you want a Netflix night, I will usually stop what I’m doing early and watch. I value sleep and also prioritize getting enough of it, but I will still stay up for game night or movie night or milkshakes-and-life-talk night if you offer. Why? I place a high importance on little experiences like these; it is in them that we make some of the best memories. And after all, you only live once, right? 😉
“In between goals is a thing called life, that has to be lived and enjoyed” -Sid Caesar
When you say yes to what life offers you, there’s no telling what greatness could come from it. When you’re 90 years old and looking back on all of your years, do you want to just see study guides and email inboxes? Wouldn’t you much rather see late-night ice cream runs, a sunrise from the back of a truck, and heart-to-heart chats on the floor? Won’t you remember the brunch dates, splashing through puddles, and blasting music with the car windows rolled down way more than the hours at the office on any given day or countless math problems for any given class?
Say yes even when you think you can’t fit it in your schedule. Say yes even when the time may not be the most convenient. There are 1,440 minutes in every day; I promise you can spare a few of them to take a break and enjoy yourself. Stepping away for a little bit from whatever you’re working on will likely benefit you anyway!
Say yes even when you think you don’t want to. You’ll probably end up having the time of your life and knowing is always so much better than having the “what if?” thoughts tossing around in your head. My default answer when invited to do anything used to always be “no” regardless of what I really wanted because that’s just what immediately came out of my mouth. It was a reaction driven by fear. I almost always regretted not taking the time to force my brain to slow down and not automatically turn down everything.
Don’t get me wrong, saying yes to life is different than saying yes to every favor someone asks of you and being taken advantage of. Obviously, you can’t over-commit and overwork yourself. If you do that, you really won’t be able to say yes to the experiences that will really matter!
Take charge of your own happiness. Make the decision to not just exist, but to live. Ultimately, the point of life is to live it. The point is to thrive and to fall, to make mistakes and to learn, to fall in love with everything, to realize your passion, and to cut what brings you down. Life is messy. It’s hard and imperfect and raw, but that’s what makes it so beautiful. When you live life to the fullest, you chase your dreams, but you also roll with the opportunities you have to just go for it and say yes.
“We all have two lives. The second one starts when we realize we only have one” –Confucius
~How do you say yes to your life?