STRENGTH & FOCUS: YOLO? No no!
I recently had the opportunity to speak with a few teenagers, and during the course of the conversation, one of the teens began to brag about some wild adventures and ended the story with, “YOLO!”
The statement “You Only Live Once” (YOLO, in pop culture) has been made popular to excuse sometimes foolish, irresponsible, or self-destructive behaviors.
- “I’m going to stay out late partying tonight and skip school/work tomorrow. YOLO!”
- Making an impulsive and life-changing decision without considering the consequences.
- Engaging in unsafe or self-destructive behaviors because, for whatever reason, in the moment of decision the consequences are of little importance.
On the contrary, this statement could certainly be used for the positive, although in my experience I’ve observed it being used much more regarding the former. (It’s also possible that those people using it in the previous situations were more vocal and boisterous with announcing the “reason” for their actions.) Using this in the positive can also take many forms.
- “I’m going to go back to school/training to better myself and advance my career!”
- “I’m going to go skydiving/hiking across the state/on a once in a lifetime adventure/etc.”
- “I will start the business of my dreams and become the successful entrepreneur I’ve always wanted to be!”
In either case, and the point of this piece, is the point I started off with. The problem with thinking that you only live once is that it couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, it’s wrong if you choose to accept this perspective. It’s wrong because you don’t live only once – You Live Every Single Day! And every day you have the opportunity to do great things, make decisions that serve your higher purpose, and experience the most exhilarating life. How do you feel about that?
Each day you have the chance to make something magnificent happen. Each of us has the same 24 hours in the day to live a life of excellence – your own life of excellence by your own standards, desires, and dreams. And you know what? If in the past you chose a certain behavior or made a decision that no longer serves you and your purpose today, CHANGE IT!
Just because you made a certain choice once or twice or however many times in the past doesn’t mean you have to continue making that same choice over and over. This isn’t the movie “Groundhog Day.” We all rallied behind Bill Murray as he raced around town helping people, turning wrongs into rights, and ultimately making a perfect day for himself (and, of course, finally getting the girl).
Now, I mentioned this movie to add a little humor to the topic because if you’re like me, you’ve probably referenced the movie at least once in conversation, but seriously, you have the opportunity each day to live the life you want. Make great decisions. Make new choices that serve the person you are today and want to be in the future. Create the future you truly want and deserve.
Each day is yours to create as you choose.
“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t, you’re right.”
*This article was originally posted on my personal blog, thepathofme.blogspot.com, a few weeks ago. After an interesting conversation with some teens this weekend, I decided to publish this piece again with NEPA Scene because I think it’s relevant to all age groups.