If you knew you only had 5 more years to live….

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This topic contains 24 replies, has 14 voices, and was last updated by  Pat Rupert 7 years, 8 months ago.

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  • #110594

    Emi Whittle
    Participant

    If you knew you only had 5 more years to live, what would you be doing now? What would you be planning to do? How would your daily life or long-term priorities be different? What if it was 10 years?

    Life is short – and sometimes we forget, until illness or circumstance jumps up and smacks us in the face! I don’t claim to have any answers – just pondering, am I making the impact in the world that I want to make? Am I using myself and my talents (? questionable if I have any!) in the best possible way?
    What do you think?
  • #110642

    Pat Rupert
    Participant

    Drop wage earning, continue to travel, but bring grandkids along more often. I love to travel and spend time with the little ones, but struggle to find the time. My plans have always included getting the grandkids to see portions of the world they don’t experience first hand. Part of that is getting them excited about learning of the places they might go. I’m 55 so know my most effective horizon is likely somewhere between 1 day and 20 years, already working on it, but not yet ready to give up teh wage earning. sigh…

  • #110640

    Emi Whittle
    Participant

    Awesome – travel and opening young minds!!! But yeah, I figure even if I live ONE more year, I have to have money in order to do anything – eat, sleep, drink – and more money if I want to fulfill any priorities! Essential truth of most life – gotta have that mooolah! I love that term you used too – “effective horizon”. Thanks for responding!! Where’s your next trip???

  • #110638

    Mark Hammer
    Participant

    I suspect I’d finally get around to making out a will, instead of putting it off. Not sure if I’d get the air conditioning on the car fixed or not. It’s been on the fritz for 5 years already, so what’s another 5? Plus that’s 2 grand to put towards something else, like charity. Couple of chores around the house I’ve been meaning to get to, and some projects I started on 15 years ago that need to finally be finished. After helping a hobby-buddy’s widow dispose of the accumulated contents of their basement (a task that, 2 years on, is still far from over), I think I’d need to organize and identify my own holdings for my family to squeeze some money out of. As my wife put it, “She has you to help. I would have nobody.”. That’s the trouble with obscure hobbies that have value only the expert eye can identify. I might take the opportunity to reprimand my senior management, but continue to come in to work; squirming is good for them. I’d probably write a lot more letters to the editor, AND send them in. Somewhere in the last year, I’d make sure to have a bowl/piece of some of the things I had to give up 13 years ago when I was diagnosed with Type II diabetes.

    Yep, that’s about it.

  • #110636

    Emi Whittle
    Participant

    Wow – very thorough and thoughtful! Thanks for responding!

  • #110634

    Shannon Kennedy
    Participant

    As a young professional, just starting out, I’d have to say that I’d want to see what I haven’t seen before. Travel, travel, travel. Although, having not been in the workforce before, I haven’t really seen anything past academics. I’d want to have a balance of everything: Travel, family, friends, work, and relaxation…but isn’t that what we should strive for anyways? When you compress your life into a decade or less, it seems short and rushed, but in reality, it really isn’t. Great question to think about and ponder!

  • #110632

    Emi Whittle
    Participant

    Ah to be young! I remember saying the same thing – that I hoped to have that balance of everything in my life! But, “life” took over – marriage, kids, divorce, work work work, school, activities, saving for retirement, saving for college, household stuff, vehicle stuff, medical stuff…. life IS really short and rushed!!! But, these are the trade-offs I have made for the things that I value – raising child well, doing good work, being a good mate, giving my family all the love and good I can, giving them a nice home… doing some good outside the home for the “community”…. and that plus grocery shopping is all there is time for…. !! Balance is nearly impossible! But it is OK for now – and I wouldn’t change a thing! Always good to try for the best balance possible for each of us though, I do agree! I hope you have a LOOOONG time to see all the things you want to in ife!

  • #110630

    I would focus on relationships, spending as much time as humanly possible with family and friends (hopefully without disrupting their lives for 5 years, lol). I’d probably continue to work and load up on as much life insurance as possible – providing a comfortable lifestyle to survivors is a much bigger priority than scrambling around trying to complete activities on some bucket list!

    Of course, given the uncertaintly of life, we should all be engaging in our 5 year plan right now, despite the absence of certain impending doom, right?

  • #110628

    Sam Allgood
    Participant

    Don’t know that I would change anything. I believe I am in the center of God’s will for my life right now, using the gifts He has given me to serve others and minister to their spiritual needs as much as possible.

  • #110626

    Ed Albetski
    Participant

    Wow… My wife and I are retiring in three weeks, so I am old enough for this notion to be a little depressing . We do have a good deal of travel planned, but if I knew my time was limited, I would make every effort to spend it with the people I care about. I might volunteer for causes I think important and become much more politically active (which I plan to now anyway). Interesting that when presented with limited time, many folks dismiss their jobs from their plans immediately. I wonder what type of responses this query would have gotten in the 1940’s or 50’s.

  • #110624

    Steve Ressler
    Keymaster

    Family
    Friends
    Travel

  • #110622

    Emi Whittle
    Participant

    Right! But, I know I lose focus all the time…. Indeed, i do sweat the small stuff…. quite often to the dismay of those around me! If I don’t force myself to re-focus, I spend time on the things that really don’t matter…. til I get myself back on track!

  • #110620

    Emi Whittle
    Participant

    I hope you and your wife enjoy an awesome retirement full of travel and each other and family and friends!!!
    And I did actually receive some in-person responses that talked about working harder over those 5 years to give their children as much of a secure future as possible – financially in addition to emotionally!

  • #110618

    Vicky
    Participant

    I would want to travel to all those places on my list (Egypt, Greece, Figi, etc) and spend time with my family and friends. I would also hope not to sweat the small stuff and do what makes me happy vs what sounds good. A few months ago I read “The Happiness Project” by Gretchen Rubin. She spent a year focusing on her happiness and her takeaways have helped me focus on what makes me happy and how to be a better person.

  • #110616

    Mark Hammer
    Participant

    Here’s a thoughtful little piece my wife passed along to me on “Kicking the bucket list” that might stand in contrast to some people’s views.
    http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2010/09/13/f-vp-taylor.html Interesting read.

  • #110614

    Vicky
    Participant

    Mark, thanks for this read. It’s the journey and the adventure that’s important more than the end result sometimes. It’s always nice to stop and smell the roses–in your own backyard or at the Great Wall of China.

  • #110612

    Emi Whittle
    Participant

    Ooh! That is a neat article! I am not sure I agree that it is in contrast to other people’s views, but its a nice view of a walk down the bucket list thinking path – love some of the comments afterwards too – and appreicate the avoidance of unnecessary profanity – yes, we all know what rhymes with “bucket” besides Nantucket! πŸ™‚ Life IS short, Everything IS a trade off, and I’d like to think that I make choices, when I can, about my priorities, to reflect what I value. Doesn’t always work though! I value health, but darn it, I LOVE chocolate! I value personal integrity, but darn it, I DO see all the shades of grey… πŸ˜‰

  • #110610

    Emi Whittle
    Participant

    Ooh – awesome – I will check that out next – Love experiments in real life… Cool!

  • #110608

    Michele McDevitt
    Participant

    Quit and start consulting.

  • #110606

    Kehinde Olaiya
    Participant

    Reply by kenny Olaiyau
    I will touch and impact lives the more. I will appreciate God for the grace to know about it because it will give me the opportunity to live a good life. I will live a more selfless life, preach the gospel and seek the face of God the more. Afterall, we are pilgrims on earth.

  • #110604

    Henry Brown
    Participant

    Being a cancer survivor, (almost 15 years ago) I have learned that there is no guaranty’s and one needs to insure that your “bucket list” remains fairly close to empty and updated…

    Yes I know that the current economic situation certainly limits one’s options, BUT again perhaps because of my beating cancer, I am of the believe that life is too short to earn a wage while not making a difference and enjoying it,

  • #110602

    Without a doubt, I’d line up a travel schedule for all the places I want to visit and start knocking them out, bringing as many people along as possible.

  • #110600

    Emi Whittle
    Participant

    Yey on being a cancer SURVIVOR! And yep…. See, I believe my Mama loves me, and due to a recent sudden illness of a family member, she talked with me about the things that run in my family, mostly high blood pressure and diabetes, some cancers — but at the end of her warning to me about family history, she said But, you can do every single thing exactly right and not enjoy one single minute and still get something and die young anyway! So, enjoy life too!!!! I’m sure she didn’t mean I should indulge in the best/greasiest burgers 5 times a day…. but that I shouldn’t deprive myself of that joy occassionally, either…. oooh, wait, moms can’t be right… πŸ˜‰ Maybe just this once, Mom is right…

  • #110598

    Emi Whittle
    Participant

    Ooh yeah, travel seems to come up a lot! Bringing as many people as possible…. interesting how important other people are to our lives…. I wonder how many folks would want their final few years to be spent alone… perhaps a few, but not many. I think the older I get the more I see how all people are connected, even when we don’t think so… things we do affect others, vice versa (?), and it is unavoidable…

  • #110596

    jill herndon
    Participant

    Well… I had to look this one in the eye directly when cancer loomed. It took less than 24 hours to get together the Powers of Attorney, Trust, Will and a hug and good luck from my lawyer. Too many long faces so I went off to Myrtle Beach where I found opportunities to flirt, and get a massage and beach time. No point in self-pity. I didn’t tell very many people — and was hammered after surgery by my godchildren for not telling them but there was a wedding to do and no point in bringing it up.

    The cancer did not survive me.

    But every day this same question is here — am I doing what I want to do if I have only a limited time left — and the answers really surprise me! It is not “I will go on exotic trips” and it is working in the public school system with special programs for special needs children as an on call substitute. I do this, fill myself with miracles and laughter, then head anywhere out of town to just sit and absorb the beauty of nature. There is love everywhere.

    And where there is not love, I have stepped aside. I have no time for petty or mean and judgmental people, criticism etc…

    I no longer do TV.

    I research and then gamble on my investments and win — this has given me the edge to move and cut and run on my gut. Up on the year.

    Quality choices and quality time and quality results.

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