Except for death and taxes, everything else you do in your life is your choice.
It’s not that life is short. It’s that life is finite. You don’t have forever. I don’t have forever. And even if we pooled both our lives we still wouldn’t have enough time to do everything.
So a choice must be made. And when making this choice, you can go down one of two roads.
You can look at what the masses are doing, look at what’s popular, look at what’s cool, look at what’s trending… or you can look inside yourself.
One leads to a bleak, grey, desperate, hierarchical existence. The other leads to a life.
Songs that give you chills. Books you can’t put down. A job where the time flies and you can’t wait to go in on a Monday morning. A wife that you adore.
Spend as much of your time here on Earth as you possibly can doing things that you have a personal connection to.
You weren’t born a blank canvas. You were born with inclinations toward certain activities, certain fields, certain people, certain art… and you were born with a limited time-frame with which to explore. So explore.
What not to do
Don’t follow a career path you have no feeling for just because it pays “well.” No salary is high enough to make up for it.
Don’t champion an actor, a musician, a writer, a politician… just because they’re popular or famous or well-thought-of. Make your own mind up and own your decision.
Don’t pretend to value things you couldn’t give a shit about merely because they are “an institution.” Traditions are just peer pressure from dead people.
What to do
Measure everything you come across by how personally connected you feel to it.
Does it interest you? Does it make you curious? Does it make you want to come back for more? Does it make you feel alive when you think about it?
The better you get at listening to and trusting this voice inside you, the more you feel like you are living the life you were meant to live.