Bonnie Ware’s style of writing is simple but somehow powerful. Enjoy of my favorite here.
What does good enough mean to you? Does it mean true contentment? Does it mean satisfying the dreams of your heart? Or does it mean plodding along?
We are the creators of our own lives, whether we do so consciously or not. Many people go through lives with dreams, but with no honest ambition to see them come true, or with no real belief that attaining them is actually possible.
Sometimes we see our dreams as a fantasy, not as a possibility. We get so caught up in that fantasy that we become addicted to the dream itself. Yet we are scared of seeing it realised, of it becoming reality. We hang onto the dream as a dream, with no true belief or intention to make it reality. And yet what are dreams? They are the yearnings of our heart, the driving force of who we are.
So, many people plod along through life semi-satisfied with a mediocre existence. This doesn’t present challenges. It allows safety in routine and conformity. Why rock the boat and change anything? Why indeed? As they watch the lives of others for hours and hours on television, their own lives are passing them by.
Fear, an emotion given far too much power, rules. We all have fear. No one is immune. But we have a choice to face it and in doing so, dissolving it into the nothingness from which it came. It takes courage, will, strength, determination, and positive action. As Einstein said, wisdom comes from the doing not the knowing. We can all know about something enough, but until we actually do it, we can never truly know it.
We are given the power of choice. And our lives are our own. We owe it to ourselves to be the very best we can be. Life is over in a short time. And not all of us will even be blessed with living until old age. If this was the last week of your life, are you living how you truly want to be or working toward that?
Congratulations if it is. And thankfully for some it will be. But guaranteed, none of those people have a mediocre existence. Anyone who knows true contentment knows that they have had to work toward it, make conscious choices, face fear and be misunderstood. But the beating of their heart is the beat they walk to, not a beat set in time by others or by fear.
I fell into conversation with a lady the other day, a stranger, as I often do. We chatted for about ten minutes, laughing and friendly. As we departed, we hugged and wished each other well. It was lovely of course. Until her final words to me, “You have a good enough day”. Good enough? What sort of farewell is that?! What sort of wish is that? It took me back, initially leaving me a little speechless. I then wished her well on her way, in a much more positive fashion, and off we went to our own lives. But it stayed on my mind all day and still is, obviously. “You have a good enough day!” Her heart meant well. I know that. The greeting was given with kind intentions.
But to me “You have a good enough day” translates roughly into “You have a day of mild boredom and complacency, an average day that you survive just for the sake of it”. Gee thanks! It was a puzzling remark and still leaves me a little puzzled. But having expectations that others will be as we are, or as we would like them to be, is a waste of time anyway and as I said, I am sure that her intention was kind.
Personally, I can’t do good enough. I tried that. It was never good enough! If we spend our lives kidding ourselves that we are happy with good enough, then we will join the ranks of some of my previous dying patients, who wished too late that they had found the courage to honour their own hearts.
You have the power of choice to create the life that you dream of.
So what is good enough for you? What is it that you could change to take you to another level of contentment in life? The changes don’t have to be grand. We can only ever do one step at a time anyway. We can talk ourselves out of our dreams if we look too far ahead, wondering how on earth it could all come together. We don’t know how it will all come together. Leave that up to life itself, because life rewards those who honour their hearts, in ways too perfect for us to imagine.
Our job is to find the courage and simply take the first step. Then the next step will be revealed, then the next and so on. Each step will become clear when it is time to do so. Don’t worry about anything beyond that. Just take the step in front of you.
Then one day, you realise that you are now living your dream. It is real, not a fantasy anymore. You have caught up with it. It is said that our dreams come a size too big so we can grow into them. Be open to growing in that direction. You owe it to yourself.
What is good enough for you? What is good enough that you can look back on your life and be content with the choices that you have made? I hope that it is how you are living your life now. But if it isn’t, then what are you waiting for? Determine what is good enough and take the first step towards that. That’s all that you have to do. Take one small step at a time.
Then one fine day, you will smile to yourself. You will realise that you did it, that the life you are now living really is good enough.