How would you spend the last day of your life?

How would you spend the last day of your life?


“Half moon” courtesy of Mary S..

Day 12 of the 21 Day Freedom Challenge required me to plan the last day of my life.

This was the hardest challenge to date.

It forced me to really think about how I would construct and spend the last day of my life. This exercise puts your daily life into perspective. I mean, how many hours do you and I waste on meaningless things– daytime TV, obsessing over social media “likes”, or getting angry over the amount of traffic on our way to work.

But on your last day you’d probably not give a damn about any of that.

Also, I don’t know about you–but I would want to spend my last day at home. In the place and with the people I love most in this world.

Here’s my last day itinerary:

6:00 am- wake up and watch a sunrise

7:00 am- exercise and walk around my neighborhood

8:00 am- coffee on the back porch and read The Lived of the Dead— the final chapter in “The Things They Carried” (my favorite book)

9:00 am- make waffles for the kids and Cindy

10:00 am- write with daughter at the kitchen table

11:00 am- have a catch with my two sons in the backyard

12:00 pm- lunch with my parents

1:00 pm- audio record personal stories and advice on friendship, self-awareness, courage, and love for my kids

3:00 pm- audio record a message for Cindy

4:00 pm- write a final blog post entitled “Once you’re alive you can’t ever be dead”- a line from “The Things They Carried”

6:00 pm- have an outdoor dinner with friends and family

9:00 pm- sit on the back porch alone, have a beer, and listen to the “Thunder Road”– both the fast and slow versions a final time

9:30 pm- tuck each child into bed

10:00 pm- talk with Cindy about tomorrow

11:00 pm- go to bed

I challenge you to do this “last day of my life” exercise today.

You’ll do some soul-search and it might be scary and emotionally hard but it will put your actions and thoughts into perspective.

If today was your last day– what conversations would you have? What would you tell your children? Your spouse? Your parents? Would you ask a specific person for forgiveness?  Would mend a broken relationship that has been haunting you for years?

What actions would you take right now? Could you take any those actions today instead of waiting until the last day of your life?

Thinking about your own death is uncomfortable and deeply personal. But it’s the absolute truth.

This exercise provides us with a spoonful of urgency to help us recover, heal, and get our–seemingly long lives–right.

One day you and I will die.

And it will be too late for us to have the conversations we always wanted to have or do the things we always wanted to do but saved for another day because we were too afraid to say or do them when we were alive.

Be well,


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