You’ve probably seen this video below of Brittany Maynard talking about her decision to end her own life after her fatal diagnosis. I wanted to highlight something she said that one asks themselves when facing death:
“What’s important to you? What do you care about? What matters?”
And her answer:
“Pursue that. Forget the rest.”
Brittany is choosing to spend more time with family and friends, and to travel to as many places she wants to see as she can.
Brittany is scheduled to die on November 1st.
Family. Friends. Travel. That’s what matters to Brittany. She doesn’t say that she wants to spend more time at work finishing a big project or buy a brand new corvette with her retirement money she’ll no longer need. Those things don’t matter to her.
I am not saying that working on a big project or getting a corvette is a bad thing. Obviously, when our lifespan shortens by decades priorities change. But thinking of our own mortality is an important reminder about what is actually important.
My friend, BJ McKay, recently told me to pick up a newspaper and look at the ads. Ads tell us that we’re not smart enough, rich enough, skinny enough, healthy enough, and not having enough “spine-tingling” sex. And then look at the obituaries. You won’t find anything about personal appearance, sex life, finances, or cars in an obituary. You read names of people and places and possible a life’s mission.
We are all scheduled to die at some point. Brittany’s story is an important reminder for us all to ask ourselves…
“What do I care about? What matters?”