A Wise Quote
I was out for dinner with my good friend Stella a while back, and saw a quote (in a bathroom of all places) which was attributed to being Steve Jobs “last words” before he died. It was a very poignant quote, and I thought it would make a good discussion for a blog post……
But, alas, just like the internet, not everything you read on the bathroom wall is true. GO FIGURE! When I searched for said quote, Steve Jobs last words were not this great quote I thought I’d comment on……
“I reached the pinnacle of success in the business world. In others’ eyes, my life is an epitome of success. However, aside from work, I have little joy. In the end, wealth is only a fact of life that I am accustomed to. At this moment, lying on the sick bed and recalling my whole life, I realize that all the recognition and wealth that I took so much pride in, have paled and become meaningless in the face of impending death. In the darkness, I look at the green lights from the life supporting machines and hear the humming mechanical sounds, I can feel the breath of the god of death drawing closer.
…Now I know, when we have accumulated sufficient wealth to last our lifetime, we should pursue other matters that are unrelated to wealth. It should be something that is more important: Perhaps relationships, perhaps art, perhaps a dream from younger days. Non-stop pursuing of wealth will only turn a person into a twisted being, just like me. God gave us the senses to let us feel the love in everyone’s heart, not the illusions brought about by wealth. The wealth I have won in my life I cannot bring with me. What I can bring is only the memories precipitated by love. That’s the true riches which will follow you, accompany you, giving you strength and light to go on. Love can travel a thousand miles. Life has no limit. Go where you want to go. Reach the height you want to reach. It is all in your heart and in your hands.
What is the most expensive bed in the world? The Sick bed … You can employ someone to drive the car for you, make money for you but you cannot have someone to bear the sickness for you. Material things lost can be found. But there is one thing that can never be found when it is lost — Life. When a person goes into the operating room, he will realize that there is one book that he has yet to finish reading — Book of Healthy Life.
Whichever stage in life we are at right now, with time, we will face the day when the curtain comes down. Treasure Love for your family, love for your spouse, love for your friends. Treat yourself well. Cherish others.”
There was a lot in that quote that makes you stop and think. Think about the importance of your life, and how you are living it. The quote I read (in the bathroom) was shorter, and a bit differently worded. However, many of the thoughts were similar.
Oh Wow, Oh Wow, Oh Wow!
As previously mentioned though…… This is NOT what Steve Jobs said on his deathbed at all. What was actually said, and confirmed by those present was, Oh Wow, Oh Wow, Oh Wow! I guess that those words could be interpreted a number of different ways, depending on your beliefs. But needless to say, they are not as deeply profound as the quote I read, or the one above.
Who said those things? We don’t know. They came out a few years after Mr. Jobs died.
In trying to find the quote I had seen which impressed me, I came across a fantastic talk that Mr. Jobs gave at the commencement ceremony for Stanford in 2005, just 6 years before he died. Entitled “How to Live Before You Die” , it’s worth the 15 minutes it takes to watch it. Jobs tells 3 small stories about his life, but the last is about living YOUR best life. He tells about facing pancreatic cancer, thinking he only had a few months to live, and then finding out it was operable. He shares how your life changes — immediately and profoundly, when you think it is about to be over. I love SO many of his thoughts he shared during his talk. Many of his words exemplify what I am trying to share with so many on this blog and in my talks. He doesn’t use the title “Living a Royal Life” as I do, but what he says is similar to what I say, feel and try to share. He says he asked himself every day, “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?”………. and that if the answer was “NO” too many days in a row, he knew he needed to change something.
Are you doing today what you would want to be doing if it were the last day of your life? If not, how do you get to the place where you can say a resounding YES?
“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.”
Another quote of his I love in this video is this- “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.” YES, YES, YES, YES! So many of us are trying to please others, do what others think we should do. We copy what someone else’s idea of “success” is. Many live their lives trying to please their family- only to find out they could never please their family no matter WHAT they do. Be you. Do YOU. No one else will do you as well as you. You won’t do anyone else as well as they do either……..
If I could have one wish for those I know, love and cherish, it would be that they find the passion in their lives to live the life that pleases them. That they could have a “royal life.” That they could stop doing what they think they “should” and live THEIR best life. Not my best life. Not someone else’s best life- but the life that is THEIR best life.
Then…. upon our deathbeds, whatever age that might be, we would all go out with few regrets, and be able to say exactly what Steve Jobs said to his loved ones. “Oh wow, oh wow, oh WOW!