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Two Death Meditations

I want to share this insight I’ve gotten from Jay Shetty from the book Think Like a Monk. He recommends that we always do a death meditation at the beginning of a new year to inspire new paths in the year ahead.

These are his suggestions:


1. Fast-forward to yourself at the age of eighty or ninety, however long you want to live, and imagine yourself on your deathbed. Visualizing the inevitable will give you every lesson you need to live a fulfilling life.

Ask your future self questions such as:

What do I wish I’d done?

What experiences do I wish I’d had?

What do I regret not giving more attention to?

What skills do I wish I’d worked on?

What do I wish I’d detached from?

2. Imagine how you’d like to be remembered at your funeral. Don’t focus on what people thought of you, who loved you, and how sad they will be to lose you. Think about the impact you’ve had. Then imagine how you would be remembered if you died today. What’s the gap between these two images? This too should galvanize you to build your legacy.

My experience

As much as I don’t want to think about this subject, I find it helpful to ponder it at least once a year to check in with myself. Am I doing okay? Am I living my life the way I wish to live it? It puts me in a perspective all over again for the fact that today and right now is the gift that I’ve gotten to make the best of it. I can never have it back. I want to live nowto reflect exactly who I am and how I want to live.

More questions to ask to wrap up 2020

  • When have you felt proud of yourself in 2020? What were you doing?

  • What have you learnt about the way in which you deal with uncertainty in 2020?

  • What new habits did you create in 2020? Which ones would you want to keep?

  • When you felt at peace this year, what were you doing?

  • If you were drastically exceeding your expectations at the end of next year, what would you be doing?

What about you?

Use these answers to motivate yourself instead of having regrets. Put your wishes into action today.


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