Mrs. Murphy

A good friend of mine passed away Tuesday. Mrs. Murphy would come up my driveway from her home across the street for the last seven years to have a snack, see what I was up to, or just to spend a few moments with me. Her health had taken a dive six months ago when her brother, William, had passed away. She had become so frail I’d gotten into the habit of keeping one eye on our driveway for her approach and running after her and opening a fresh can if I missed her.

But this post isn’t about cats. It’s about death. And what you – yes, you – need to learn about death. Consider this the ultimate lifehack.

Here’s the basics: as you get older in life, death pays you more visits. At least in the developed world, death – real death, not entertaining death on television – may not stop by your life until you’re in your thirties. Then the pace picks up. A grandmother. A friend from high school, perhaps a brother or sister, a parent. When you hit mid-life, you realize in your guts you’ll be seeing a lot more of death in the future than you have in the past.

Sure, you should and will fight the good fight every time death stops by – and that is good, and right and the right thing to do. But we all know how that fight turns out.

My point in writing this post isn’t to depress the hell out of you, and it’s sure as hell not to say you should welcome or surrender or accept death. It’s a quiet suggestion you think about what death has to teach you about life. Your life. You see, every time death comes knocking, you realize with a jolt just how important, how absolutely totally important, the people you love and what you build in your life are.

The point of Getting Things Done isn’t getting more things done – that’s run the rat race faster and faster thinking. The point is so you can share being alive with the people (human and non-human) you love and with the rest of us by what you build. GTD and all the lifehacks you read online are good and useful things – but their only big and small ways to help you have enough time and a low enough stress level so you can do the really important things in your life:

  • Like tell your wife, husband, sweetheart how much you love them.
  • Like if you don’t have someone to love in your life making the effort to change that.
  • Like finding some way – even a tiny, nano little way – to make this a less fracked up world and the human race a smidgen more worthy of being called human.
  • Like spending a few moments out of your day visiting with Mrs. Murphy.

Bob Walsh sells MasterList Professional, a Windows task management application and writes, codes,
podcasts and blogs about different aspects of the digital lifestyle at ToDoOrElse, MyMicroISV and Clear Blogging. His second book, Clear Blogging, is now available at Amazon and elsewhere.

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