Sunday, January 13, 2008

Write Your Eulogy

What would you want people to say about you after you're gone? Addressing that question can help you better understand who you are and who you want to be, advises Richard Nelson Bolles, author of What Color is Your Parachute? (Ten Speed Press, revised and updated annually). This career-hunter's bible offers a checklist of values to help you set priorities. [Source: "25 Ways to Reinvent Yourself" originally published in Modern Maturity January-February 2000, transcribed by Greg Olszewski.]

GTO's Thoughts:

I stopped publishing this blog for a few months while I thought about my eulogy. I wasn't going to continue until I had figured out exactly what I hoped people would say about me when I die.

So here we are.  And here I am.  And I got nuthin'.


Here's two things that I don't want my family and friends to say
at my funeral:
(1) "He was a 'nice' guy."
(2) "He had great potential."

Ugh, the "nice" guy thing.

Nice guys have their points. (They hold doors, they say hi to people in the park, they'll listen when strangers tell them their entire life stories waiting in line at the grocery store.)

But a part of me wants to scream -- "NICE GUYS FINISH LAST!"

(I mean, look at me -- I'm in a casket! If I wasn't so nice, I'd still be alive!)

But, seriously, nice guys are (often) afraid of the world - and of life!
Nice guys don't (often) get what they want from this world.
And nice guys are not remembered (often).

Now "great potential" - that's something I think about everyday.
I'm more haunted by it actually.

I'm not doing enough with my life. I'm doing little things, but they're just not adding up to a colorful life. I want a colorful life.

I want to travel. Go on adventures. Stay with friends wherever they live. I want to see the Aurora Borealis. Skydive. Pilot a glider. I want to be interviewed by a magazine. Any magazine. Swim with dolphins...

(Yeah, just some basics. I'll start with them, then move onto more creative ventures.)

But I've got to stop having potential, and start having:


That's the real trick.

Thanks for reading!
GTO ("the nice guy with great potential")

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