I'm dying. You're dying. We're all dying.
Deep down we know this, don't we? In life, death really is the only certainty - everything else is subject to change.
Think about it for a minute. You could die tomorrow. A heart attack, natural disaster, badly timed road crossing or a random accident could see you dispatched with no prior warning.
I know you know all this - unless you are perhaps insanely young and still feeling invincible. So much so that you think dying, much like turning 40, is something that only happens to other people. If so let me clarify, you are dying too and have been since the day you were born.
I know you understand the concept but are you honestly living like someone who understands the deadline?
The notion of being told our time is up brings to mind the imagine of a Doctor tasked with breaking the unfortunate news that we only have a specified amount of time left, our body failing us in some awful way. One month, perhaps six or even a year. Time on Earth cut cruelly short. The truth is, no one is actually getting out alive, we all have a date hanging over our heads, we just haven't had the news delivered by a professional.
Much like there are many ways to live well there is also a fine art to dying well.
The old adage of living each day as if it were your last really depresses me - after all, there will always be the days you have to wait in for the delivery, unblock the toilet, put the washing on or work from morning until night. Living life to the max on those days feels like a bit of a slap in the face. Imagine dropping dead on a day when your greatest achievement has been doing three loads of washing.
We hold a lot more power over our own lives and mortality than we sometimes like to admit to ourselves. What we eat, drink and how often we move our bodies to whether or not we wear a seat belt, smoke follow our dreams or jump out of planes for fun. The rest is pure luck - how utterly terrifying and freeing all at the same time!
For those of us, who are lucky enough to be currently healthy, there is a freedom in recognising that the clock is ticking. Why waste our time on the things that don't matter? Bucket lists are awesome but let's trim them down to the stuff that really matters (at one point I pinned one of those 'dancing in the rain' pins - I'd be so miserable, I can't even dance and I hate getting soggy!).
Don't put things off until your old, have more time, more money etc - if you're lucky enough to hit old age then you'll probably have different dreams by then anyway. The ones you hold right now are the ones that matter.
Stop worrying about what other people think - your future self will be so cross at you for wasting precious time on something so soul destroying.
Be happier at home (even if you're doing the cleaning). Stop saving the best for last. Use all those fancy bath products you just got for Christmas. Book the trip and enjoy your life.
We're on the cusp of a New Year. 2016 beckons and with it the chance to celebrate the fact that we survived this year and have been given a crack at another.
Raise a glass - Here's to dying well!Suggest a correction