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4 Reasons To Let Death Be Your Biggest Motivator

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I don’t know about everyone else, but there seem to be a lot of people around me dying lately. It’s this very idea that has become one of my biggest motivators of late, and it can do the same for you. Death comes when you least expect it, and it’s relentless in the way that it touches our lives.

Recently, one of my work colleagues was sitting down having lunch with his mum. Halfway through the meal, she was talking and couldn’t speak all of a sudden. Within minutes, an ambulance arrived, and within hours, she had passed away. She was perfectly healthy and had no signs of anything like this happening. It was a stroke that tragically ended her life and the life of a grandmother.

A year earlier, the same thing happened to my aunt. She was just going about her day, perfectly healthy, and then in less than twenty-four hours a stroke took her life away. There is no logic to any of these random acts of death, other than one inescapable truth; we all need to come to grips with the fact that life and death go hand in hand.

When death strikes it shouldn’t come as a shock but rather an expectation. It shouldn’t come as a tragedy but rather a celebration. So your thinking to yourself right now in this moment “Tim what’s inspiring about all of this?”

What’s inspiring is that you can let death be your biggest motivator. Here are the four reasons why.

1. It should remind you to live fearlessly and in the moment

We spend a large proportion of our life suffering from fear. In my life, I have feared lots of different things and each time that fear has ended up becoming a triumph. This is why when we look at death we need to live fearlessly. It’s unavoidable, and it happens to all of us.

Death reminds us of the most important rule of meditation: to live in the moment. We can’t control what has already happened or to some degree what may happen in the future (although we can plant seeds now that can allow our future to blossom).

Living in the moment and being grateful for what we do have is what will enable us to live fearlessly. Pretending that death doesn’t exist or that we should fear it in some way will never allow us to be successful. Don’t let the concept of death use you but instead use it to motivate you for the here and now.

2. It should create a sense of urgency

The one piece of motivation we all need is to have more urgency about our lives. Many of us live as if time is irrelevant and that we are immortal. Worse still, we live as though some person in the distant future is going to cure all medical illness and allow us to live forever.

Medicine will continue to evolve in the future, but it will not stop death in any way. Instead, think of death as a way to motivate yourself to get more out of every day. Allow death to make you think about why your energy levels are so important.

“Your energy levels are the multiplier of time” – Tim Denning

The more energy you have, the less you need to sleep and, therefore, the more awake time you will have to work on your dream and crush your goals (such a great motivation).

If you have been thinking about changing jobs or becoming an entrepreneur why wait? Given the two stories I have presented about strokes occurring, what makes you think any of us immune? If anything, the western way of living has made a lot of us have much less time on this earth, not more.

Use death as your motive for action and as a tool that can allow you to impact and inspire others sooner. Don’t focus on it in a negative way but in a way that will empower you to be more and to become who you have always wanted to be.

Stop settling for second best because you may not have the time in your life to ever get what you want. For the younger people out there, enjoy your teenage and early adult life and spend as much time as you can exploring.

Travel to as many destinations as you can and see what real beauty is out in the world. Meet new people from other cultures and see how the poorest parts in the world live. Have more urgency about what you do and don’t forget to live in the moment.

3. It should make you remember to love everyone else and love them why they are here

Too often we forget to love everyone around us and we are too busy judging. Let death be the motivation to connect with more people right now and to love them for who they are. Let death make you forget the differences between our varied cultures and only remind you to love others equally.

The people you currently love should never be taken for granted. At any stage, like with the two stroke victims I mentioned, they could be taken away from you without any chance to say goodbye. Don’t let this make you sad but let it motivate you to love them even more and spend the time you have with them in a meaningful way.

4. It should remind you of your purpose

At each of the recent funerals I have attended, I take careful note as to how the person who has passed is remembered. I let these funerals remind me not to be one of those people that are spoken about for a few hours after they are buried and then quickly forgotten by the majority of attendees.

Instead, I let the funeral and the deceased person remind of my purpose and to reset my motivation each time. It’s so easy to be distracted in life with our newly shortened attention spans. Death can help you refocus on your vision and remember why you do what you do.

It can help you think about what impact you want to have and how you want others to talk about you when you’re gone. On these somber days, all the money or lack of money is forgotten, and no one speaks of such a word. Very quickly, we are reminded just how insignificant money can be in the long term. Just remember that only your impact and influence are eternal.

***Final Thought***

Remember there is only one of you and that each of us is special in our own unique way. I appreciate every one of you coming to Addicted2Success to be inspired and get practical advice. All I ask is that you pay it forward and do the same for others while you’re on this earth.

Be the light in someone else’s day during their darkest moment. Be the smile that may be that spark a homeless person needs to turn their life around. Send chills down people’s spine with your unique craft and creative side.

If you ever want to chat, then you know where to find me. Much love and much respect, and always stay Addicted 2 Success!

Tim is best known as a long-time contributor on Addicted2Success. Tim's content has been shared millions of times and he has written multiple viral posts all around personal development and entrepreneurship.You can connect with Tim through his website www.timdenning.net

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9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. Stefanie

    Feb 11, 2016 at 7:25 am

    Great article, Tim! I agree, it’s so easy to get distracted by such small things in our daily life! My biggest fear has been knowing death is near and noticing there were so many things I still wanted to do. That’s my biggest motivator for taking action and being with people that make a difference for me (instead of hanging out with people with a mediocre attitude).
    I liked the reminder of the energy, that’s so true! By the way, do you know the 1 Page Productivity Planner from Brendon Burchard? I found it a very helpful tool to have more clarity and presence.

    • Tim Denning

      Feb 12, 2016 at 8:35 am

      Thanks Stefanie I’m glad you liked it. I do know Brendan Burchard but I don’t have his planner. I would love it if you could send it to me 🙂

      • Stefanie

        Mar 7, 2016 at 8:20 am

        Done 🙂 Enjoy!

  2. Lawrence Berry

    Feb 10, 2016 at 1:02 am

    A lot of people are afraid to think of death because they are afraid to die, but only when you no longer cling to life, can you truly live to the fullest. One must realize that one day you will die and nothing would have mattered. so what do we really have to lose. Steve Jobs once said that remembering that we are going to die is the best way to avoid the trap of thinking that we have something to lose. This article was a great reminder to every to live life to the fullest and don’t be afraid to face death, for you should let it push you to greatness!

    • Tim Denning

      Feb 10, 2016 at 7:32 am

      Spot on Lawrence and Steve Jobs’s quote is timeless. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Bertie

    Feb 9, 2016 at 3:21 pm

    Yep… this is something nobody wants to talk about, but it’s the one thing common to each and every human being. We tend to think that we’ll live to the average life expectancy in our country, and thus we leave for later everything we really want to do. We believe our life will follow a predictable path that fits into our schemes, but it doesn’t need to be that way.

    • Tim Denning

      Feb 10, 2016 at 7:31 am

      Totally agree with you Bertie. Why would anyone want to follow a predictable path? I sure wouldn’t.

  4. Jody McPhearson

    Feb 9, 2016 at 5:13 am

    That is a powerful reminder to live your purpose. I am embracing this in my life as I look to inspire others to live theirs. Thanks for the helpful reminder.

    • Tim Denning

      Feb 9, 2016 at 9:11 am

      No probs Jody and I am glad to see you are inspiring others in the process. Thanks for reading.

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Life

6 Reasons Why You Should Never Glorify Failure After You’ve Failed

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Many people are ashamed of failure. If they so much as smell a whiff of failure, they quit instantly because the public notices it quickly. But you shouldn’t be ashamed of failure. A lot of people have failed. I’ve failed over and over again in my career, business, relationships and more. Yet, I keep trying because failure isn’t the final verdict. (more…)

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Life

How to Move Forward When All Seems Lost

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A few weeks ago, the relationship of my venture with a long-term client turned rocky. Losing them would mean a huge loss for my business, but it appeared like that’s where we were headed. My mind raced with unpleasant thoughts. Maybe the client had figured out that I couldn’t lead my team well. Maybe I was not good enough to be an entrepreneur. Maybe I was not good enough to do anything.

Why was the world so unfair?! Within moments, my anxiety had shot through the roof and my heart was racing faster than an F1 car engine. But I know I’m not the only one who feels like this.

Why Problems Overwhelm Us

As human beings, we’re good at solving problems, so they shouldn’t stress us out. Yet, they do just that. Why?

Consider some of these situations in life. When a relationship is headed for troubled waters, we wonder whether our partner loves us anymore. Our mind unearths memories of when we got dumped or rejected. We blame ourselves for falling for the wrong people and tell ourselves that we’re not worth receiving love.

How do you think the relationship will steer after that? If we cannot stick to a diet, we think of other times when we gave up. We remember what people said about things that we couldn’t do and ask ourselves, “were they right?” We tell ourselves that we don’t have what it takes to succeed at anything.

Do you think we’ll find the grit to stick to the diet after this? So here we are… thinking we’re not good enough to be entrepreneurs, to be loved, to get promoted, or to achieve our personal goals. Notice a pattern yet? We move in the wrong direction. The destination is to achieve the goal. And unless we stop giving into emotions and start addressing situations, we’ll keep failing to get there.

Negative emotions (and even extremely positive ones) blur our vision. The more we focus on them, the deeper we go into how we feel. We either get angry because things aren’t the way we want them to be, or get paralyzed by the fear of the worst possible outcome. This means we pull away from the one thing we must do to set things right — take action.

“If you can’t sleep, then get up and do something instead of lying there and worrying. It’s the worry that gets you, not the loss of sleep.” – Dale Carnegie

How to Take Action in the Face of Problems

Most human beings are good at solving problems. Where we get blindsided is at diagnosing the right problem. To diagnose the right problem, we must address the situation instead of emotions. We must see things for what they are, collect facts on what we’re worrying about, and then ask ourselves, “What should I do next?”

In his book “How to Stop Worrying and Start Living”, Dale Carnegie wrote: “Neither you nor I nor Einstein nor the Supreme Court of the United States is brilliant enough to reach an intelligent decision on any problem without first getting the facts.”

To address the tricky situation with my client, I took the following three steps:

1. First, I acknowledged the feeling

Solving a problem doesn’t mean ignoring emotions. It’s important to acknowledge how you feel because it reveals the path, but domesticating your emotions is more important. I acknowledged how I felt by saying, “I feel anxious because the client might not want to work with us anymore and this will be a financial loss for us.”

Note how I said “I feel anxious” and not “I’m a loser.” If I had given into negative chatter, I wouldn’t have uncovered the direction to move in (the part after “because”). This is why domesticating emotions is crucial.

2. Next, I prepared for the worst

We often run from our worst fears rather than facing them despite knowing that the worst outcome rarely comes true. The result is that we stay stuck in fear instead of pushing beyond it. And we never discover what we’re really capable of, which sucks.

In my case, the worst meant losing the client. It would hurt but it was the truth. However, we could get more clients. Plus we already had other clients who helped us pay the bills. In other words, I wouldn’t have to live on the street.

The moment I accepted this, a huge weight got lifted off my chest. This prepared me for the third and final step.

“Expect the best. Prepare for the worst. Capitalize on what comes.” – Zig Ziglar

3. Lastly, I examined the situation

Examining a situation means setting aside your emotional baggage and focusing on facts. When you trust that you’ll be okay, you become better at diagnosing the real problem. Once I felt lighter, I could see things clearly.

I used the 5 Whys Technique (asking “why” five times) to figure out the real reason for the client’s dissatisfaction. Then I collected data on the issue and on what we had previously delivered.

Finally, I reached out to the CEO of the client and held a detailed and constructive discussion based on my findings. Within four days, the CEO and I were back to the way things were before.

The best way to prepare for tomorrow is to give today your best. I’m not sure whether the issue with the client got resolved for good or whether the client won’t pack up and leave one day. However, I am sure that I’m prepared to handle such cases better today than I was yesterday.

Control your emotions instead of letting them run amok. Accept things for what they are instead of what you want them to be. Be realistic instead of delusional. Address the situation instead of succumbing to emotions.

Don’t preempt what lies ten miles ahead and get paralyzed by fear. Address what lies clearly in front of you and keep moving. One day you’ll be surprised about how close to your destination you are.

How do you move forward when all hope seems to be lost? Share your advice below!

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8 Effective Tips to Improve Your Emotional Wellbeing

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You know what they say, “Health Is Wealth”. But, more often than not, we only mean it in the context of physical health. There’s no question that being fit is the world’s greatest treasure. Unfortunately, not a lot of us take time out to look after our emotional health and wellbeing.

Let’s not forget – it’s ‘Mind Over Matter’. So, if you are able to take control of your emotions, thoughts, how you feel through the day and how you respond to myriad situations; there’s nothing quite like it. When you become the master of your emotions; health, prosperity, and basically all good things are bound to follow you.

With that said, here are 8 surefire ways that will improve your emotional wellbeing:

1. Practice Mindfulness

Half the time, we don’t even know what we’re thinking or how we’re feeling. That’s because we let our minds operate on autopilot. It’s time to take control of your mind. Be aware of what and how you feel throughout the day. The upside to this practice is that you can detect negative emotions right on the onset and quickly change them and their corresponding feeling.

Feelings of anger, jealousy, hatred; they are not good for the mind, soul, or the body. Paying close attention to the spectrum of emotions you experience throughout the day, will help you detect the negative ones and kick them away before they fester deep enough to take away your happiness and emotional health.

2. Stay Physically Active

As you engage in physical activities, your brain produces a whole bunch of feel-good hormones such as endorphins and dopamine. These hormones are what causes the ‘elated’ or ‘euphoric’ feeling. Being physically active uplifts your mood and your outlook towards life. It readies you to take the challenges more head-on instead of becoming overwhelmed by the littlest of inconvenience.

You are better able to analyze tough situations and take a more proactive rather than a reactive approach. It’s no question physical health is in direct proportion with emotional health. A healthy mind resides in a healthy body and vice versa.

“Caring for the mind is as important and crucial as caring for the body. In fact, one cannot be healthy without the other.” – Sid Garza-Hillman

3. Get Sufficient Sleep

Ever noticed how you feel depressed and cranky, and just out of focus the day you fail to get a good night’s sleep? Well, if you fail to get sufficient sleep for a couple of days, you are bound to feel more depressed, cranky and eventually more prone to a host of negative emotions. Research shows that sleep deprivation sends amygdala – our brain’s emotional response center into overdrive.

Amygdala controls our immediate emotional responses. When it becomes overactive, we become more reactive rather than active. We become more irritable, angry and anxious. A good night’s sleep is vital to improving your emotional wellbeing.

4. Develop a New Hobby

Learn to swim. Try arts and crafts. How about painting? Swimming is a ‘happy’ activity. You get to make new friends and stay fit. Arts and crafts, as we all know, tends to have a relaxing effect on the mind and the nerves.

Just the process of creating something from scratch makes you confident and gets those creative juices flowing. Similarly, painting helps you express yourself. All these factors together create a ‘happy you’. The one who likes to engage in new things instead of resisting change or difficult situations.

5. Eat Healthy

Ever heard of the phrase, “You are what you eat”? Well, it’s true to the last syllable. When you eat foods rich in salt, sodium, fat – you are bound to feel lethargic. It takes longer for the body to digest such foods. That means the body is forced to deprive organs of blood and use it for the digestion purpose.

Result? You become lazy, moody, not ready to take any responsibility which leads to feeling cranky and irritable. On the other hand, eating fibrous vegetables, fruits, salads, and complex sugars keeps you upbeat and healthy.

6. Laugh Your Heart Out

Laughter is the best medicine. That is why they have a dedicated ‘laughter session’ in yoga studios. You don’t even have to mean it. The simple act of spreading your cheeks and pretending to laugh sends a signal to your body that you are happy.

And what happens when you are happy? Your brain releases happy hormones like dopamine, serotonin and what not. In fact, many studies have gone so far as to stipulate that laughter alone is capable of treating all kinds of physical ailments. Why should emotional ailments be any different?

7. Try Relaxation Techniques

‘’Visualization technique’’ where you imagine yourself in a happy place is a surefire way to calm your nerves if you find yourself distressed. You may also try praying to elate yourself. Praying is good for the mind and the soul.

Controlled breathing or ‘biofeedback technique’ are some other relaxation techniques that can tame how you feel and even your bodily functions. Try surrounding yourself with aromatherapy or scented candles because the smell is a big factor in governing how we feel.

“Positive emotional energy is the key to health, happiness and wellbeing. The more positive you are, the better your life will be in every area.” – Brian Tracy

8. Count Your Blessings

We all have so much to be thankful for. It could be a friend who stands by you or a happy family. Good health. Financial freedom. Make a list of all the things that you feel grateful for in your life. If it’s a person, be sure to communicate your feelings and express your gratitude.

You will feel so much happier. Happiness is the diet of a healthy mind and an intelligent emotional response mechanism. You could also try writing a poem or simply expressing your gratitude through the power of prayers.

There are so many ways to become emotionally intelligent and not one of them requires any investment or special skills. Practically anyone and everyone can do it. All you need is the will and the desire.

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How You Can Use the Power of Gratitude to Your Advantage

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The word gratitude has been tossed around, but do you know exactly what it means or how to implement it into your life? Someone has probably told you in your life, “Express more gratitude.” Well, that sounds like a great idea, but if you don’t know what gratitude is, how can you fully express it in your life? It’s a concept that once you grasp, it will change your life. (more…)

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