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Monday, August 1, 2011

The gift of today


One today is worth two tomorrows
~Benjamin Franklin

The fact that you are reading this note indicates that you received the gift of being alive, the gift of reading, the gift of understanding, the gift of the medium through which you read this, and the gift of time to do so. Along with all these gifts come others, such as the gift of breathing in order to be alive, and the gift of thinking in order to understand.

While you may or may not take all these gifts for granted: there is one you most surely forget to appreciate as a gift now and then: the gift of today. In spite of the fact that we call today the present, we often take it for granted because we get caught in so many other things: hectic schedules, concerns about our health, our financial situation, work related problems, family or other issues, you name it. But today is here: it came, and is slowly progressing. It will last exactly 24 hours, which equals 1,440 minutes, or 86,400 seconds. Today resembles our life in that regard: it is limited and dying from the moment it is born. Here are three important thoughts to consider about today:

1) Once today is gone, it never comes back, so everything you do now will be history from tomorrow on. If you behave rash and do something you regret later, you may try to correct it -and even succeed-, but you will never be able to undo it. This also means that today is an important foundation for the rest of your life, because you are making choices and decisions that will affect your future.

2) You have a limited number of days available in your life, and no one knows how many you have left. Anything that is available in a limited supply is considered a scarce good in economic terms. With everything becoming increasingly edgy, and the pace of life picking up continuously, this scarce day cannot be wasted. Of course it depends on you to determine what "wasting" your day looks like, but I'm sure you know.

3) Today is a great beginning, because it's the first day of the rest of your life. No matter what you did in the past: today offers you a chance to start something wonderful. If there is a dream you wanted to realize, today is a good day to seriously start working on it. If you wanted to change a bad habit or correct something wrong, today is a great day to do that. There is nothing that cannot happen today, so why not make it happen?

A Chinese proverb states, Today is the tomorrow we worried about yesterday. Make sure you don't make today the yesterday you regret tomorrow...

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