The reality of life is that we are born to die. The future is set & final. It’s only the question of when & how – over which we have absolutely no choice or control.
From the womb to the tomb, one room in the ground is certainly waiting for us. There’s no escaping!
Some people always look to the future – moving forward, moving on, living for tomorrow, hoping for a better day. Others are grounded in the present and still others spend a lot of time reliving their past affairs and accomplishments.
Imagine the possibility of these scenarios:
- Living a life without limits (Refer T D Jakes’ Reposition Yourself)
- To have the option of living all over again repeatedly. (Refer “Groundhog Day” 1993)
- To live life backwards – instead of living in a forwardly linear progression. (As propounded by T. H. White in “Living Backwards or In Reverse”). One takes inspiration from the past, energy from the present and vision from the future
Most will agree that living in the present is the most favourable and realistic rather than the three mindsets mentioned above. The present is all we have & anything that we can be certain of.
Often, in word processing software, we use the Un-Do button. Ever experienced a “faux pas” and wish life itself came equipped with such a key? Regrets live in that rear view mirror and no longer affect you. Hitting un-do brings the past back to the present only to force you to relive it. So, whenever you feel you’ve chosen poorly, forgive yourself and move on. There is no “retry” no “re-do” and no “un-do” to our experiences. What’s done belongs to history and you choose to either live with it and make it right the next time under similar circumstances or you can live your life in a constant loop of regret and blame. Life teaches us we can’t “un-do” anything. Choose instead to learn and grow. Make the best out of the circumstances.
“Tomorrow’s right around the corner
I’ll get there somehow
But I’m stuck in the meantime
And I love the now.”
The movie“Holiday” is about Johnny, a thirty-year-old man, played by Gary Grant who decides that he would like to use what little money he has to take a few years off for self-discovery. Afterward, he’ll be ready to settle down to a life of work and responsibility. Johnny feels, ‘Why wait until you’re old and sick to retire?’. That’s doing things backwards & it’s most mundane.
They say that “Youth is wasted on the young”. Alternatively, it’s often said “Don’t grow up so fast” or “Don’t grow old but grow up!” No matter how old you are, grab hold of that youthful spirit and natural ferocity and go for it. It may take some bending over backwards, but life happens now and the future becomes a memory in an instant.
Here’s Woody Allen’s Perspective on Living Backwards.
I love words. It’s why I write & read. Also why I love lyrics and poems and movies. Words are powerful. They need to be guarded, for no retrieving is possible once they depart from our mouth. Most of us use words for the purpose of communication. Some of us wield words like artists wield brushes, painting something beautiful and or compelling out of what could have been merely mundane. Good writers have the ability to “paint with words”.