Life has a finite amount of time. The problem is we don’t know how much time is left on the clock. Humans are designed to live for over 100 years. Catastrophic circumstances aside, it is feasible to believe that you can live a very long life if you make good choices.
In Dan Buettner’s book The Blue Zones: Lessons for Living Longer From the People Who’ve Lived the Longest, he talks about communities scattered throughout the world with the largest concentrations of people that live to be over 100 years old. The purpose of his project was to find the commonalities with these communities and see what they were doing differently from the rest of the world.
The secrets to longevity boiled down to the following traits: eating the foods indigenous to your area (local, organic, real food), constant daily activity (gardening, walking, being self-sufficient), having a positive outlook, a strong social community (regular contact in person with friends and family), and a reason to get up every morning (purpose).
All of these traits are important, but the last one is really interesting: Purpose. A lot of the people that live to be over 100 years old are active and working into their later years. They never retire. Maybe that’s the missing link? Too many of us spend 40+ years working in jobs and careers that are a means to an end. That’s how my former coworkers described my former job with the government: a means to an end. That’s when I knew it was time to leave. That’s not the way to go through life. Wasting your prime years grinding away at a job that will some day allow you to retire and then start experiencing life. After 40+ years when you’re in your early 70s, then you can start doing the things you actually want to do. Seems like a waste of my good years.
We all have a purpose in life. What is yours? If you’re not living with purpose then now is the time to find your purpose and start living your life.