Maximising Your ‘Dash’

From time to time we all get a sobering reminder of our own, and our loved ones mortality. It is something I have always struggled with, and ultimately feared. Why? Because I am not ready to go! There is so much I want to say, so much I want to achieve, to see, to experience. Life is delicate and time is not guaranteed, its about time we all started maximising our dash!

father and son
Photo by Sam @ Pursuit of Purpose


by Linda Ellis

I read of a man who stood to speak at the funeral of a friend. He referred to the dates on the tombstone from the beginning to the end.

He noted that first came the date of birth and spoke of the following date with tears, but he said what mattered most of all was the dash between those years.

For that dash represents all the time they spent alive on earth and now only those who loved them know what that little line is worth.

For it matters not, how much we own; the cars, the house, the cash. What matters is how we live and love and how we spend our dash.

So think about this long and hard; are there things you’d like to change? For you never know how much time is left that still can be rearranged.

To be less quick to anger and show appreciation more and love the people in our lives like we’ve never loved before.

If we treat each other with respect and more often wear a smile, remembering that this special dash might only last a little while.

So when your eulogy is being read, with your life’s actions to rehash, would you be proud of the things they say about how you lived your dash?

Live In The Present

Its part of the human condition that we are forever planning the future and working for tomorrow and neglecting the present day. We don’t know what tomorrow holds, or even if there is a tomorrow – we all need to start living in the here and now.

Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.

Beautiful Boy (Darling Boy), John Lennon

To Plan, Or Not To Plan?

Of course it is important to make plans and to have some form of structure – to know the desired destination – but let life grow and manoeuvre organically towards that end goal. That isn’t to say we should be passive along the way, some gentle, and maybe a few firmer, steers every now and again are likely to be required.

Are you a planner? Making sure every little detail is considered and planned for, every hour of each trip has a planned activity, every event runs to pre-set fixed agendas?

Naturally, I am. Knowing when to step back and to stop planning has been difficult, but finding that balance has been so rewarding.

Plan the big things, make a list of all the things you want to do – a bucket list of sorts! Make sure your life has direction and you are moving towards you goals, but leave room for happiness and enjoyment.

Your Dash

Ultimately your dash, your life, is just that – YOURS.

We spend so much time these days looking to please others, seeking validation or acceptance from friends, or even strangers on social media. Forget them. Step back for a second and think…

“Am I proud of how I am living my dash?”

We only get one dash, whether it ends up being a short story or a novel. So if the answer to the question above is no – consider what things you’d like to change?

For you never know how much time is left that still can be rearranged.