My favourite quote growing up and the philosophy by which I wanted to live my life was;
‘Dream as if you’ll live forever, live as if you’ll die tomorrow’ by James Dean.
I loved it so much that I even painted it (terribly I might add!) onto a piece of old wood and hung it on my wall.
It probably still is one of my favourite quotes and making the most of my day is something I think of almost every night before I go to bed. Whilst the quote might be easy to say with words that roll off the tongue in practice (as in most things) it is a lot harder to actually do.
My life now is very different to the majority of 25 year olds I know. I launched Freckles 18 months ago, I live with an incredible family with 4 children, I live in Bath and not London, I’m normally in bed (and asleep) by 10.30pm.
But I go to bed and like some (maybe a lot of other people) I feel guilty for not making the most of my day.
Did I laugh enough, push myself enough, achieve enough?
Was I happy, did I smile enough, did I make other people happy?
Was I kind, did I tell someone I love them, do my friends and family feel appreciated?
Did I live that day as if it was my last? etc. etc. etc.
9 times out of 10 my initial reaction is to say no. No, I didn’t live as if I’d die tomorrow. But then I remind myself to rationalise and in my head I try and list all the good things, all the achievements, all the moments I laughed and all the moments I cried (this happens a lot – I get overwhelmed, quite often I’m exhausted, life is a rollercoaster and I get motion sick!) and then I feel a bit better, I realise in that day I have done something (hopefully).
The 11-year-old me interpreted 'Dream as if you’ll live forever, live as if you’ll die tomorrow' to mean that I should be jumping out of plans, partying all night, crying with laughter, being madly in love – every single day of my life.
The 25-year-old me has realised that isn’t really possible but I can laugh, I can make the most of things, I can do something kind, I can be grateful, I can be in love, I can be loved and I can tell people they are loved. I can solve problems, make someone’s life easier, find someone a job and slowly but surely set myself up for shattering some big as glass ceilings.
Oh and it’s okay to cry and say today was rubbish & terrible & awful & my life is a mess - no one's life is perfect!