Birthdays, Survival Mechanisms, and Death

So today was/is my birthday. I was born 27 years ago today!

A lot of thought went into turning 27.

This reflection made me think of some key questions I’m going to start asking myself on the cusp of every birthday. For now, these questions all have to do with the age of 27 - feel free to steal them for your birthday this year and insert whatever age you're approaching!

1. What do you NEED to accomplish by 28? (Therefore, what must you accomplish while 27?)
2. What would you regret not accomplishing by the age of 27?
3. What do you want to do, but that you think is impossible to accomplish by or at age 27?
4. If you reflect back at your opinion when you were 20, what did 20-year-old you think you’d have done by age 27?
5. This is the only year you will be 27 – so – how do you want your only 27th year to go?
6. What is your 27th year ABOUT?
7. What breakthrough do you need this year?

In answering these questions, I feel clear about what I WANT vs what I NEED, and how much room I can allow for both; both are completely valid, and what it really comes down to is one train of questions:

What is my life for?
What am I committed to, as a result of what my life is for?
What actions and ways of being are in alignment with what I’m committed to?
So, how can this year be made of actions and ways of being that embody what my life is for?

Some people read this and think these questions are awesome. Some people don’t. That’s cool too. Some people may read this and think, “Why do you have to put so much intentionality and thought into everything?”

This is a good question, to which I will say: I am afraid of regret. My biggest fear is to die with regret.

I’ve heard various quotes that all say something like, “Man, above all else, does not crave happiness. Man craves usefulness.”

Well, since pain is inevitable, I’ve decided to make pain useful. It’s been that way for a long time; yes, it’s a survival mechanism. And yes, I’m repping it anyway.

So, since I am deeply afraid of the pain of dying with regret, why not make this pain useful, and reflect with the efforts of avoiding this pain altogether? Or rather, not avoiding, but being at cause rather than at the EFFECT of it?