This was an article written by myself in the summer of 2016. At the time I had been working two jobs; one as a trainer/coach and the other as a co-op in an office building. This was an article I had to write for a philosophy class that was later published as a blog and read over 1000 times across the country.
‘The ultimate goal of human life’ is a question that is often argued when it comes to the big philosophical questions, but then again which ones aren’t? Every philosophical question is a point of argument and debate. This is what makes them philosophical. Every answer is contorted and answered through the lens of the speaker in which the answer is shaped and guided by the culmination of the life and experiences of that person. Many writings have been published on answering this question, however I do not need someone from another time, who lived a life completely different than my own, to tell me what the ultimate goal of life is. As I said before, philosophical questions are shaped to whoever is answering them. Being a trainer and aspiring to be a business owner in the near future, I have done tons and tons of research on successful people. I have done tons of research on leadership. I have done tons of research on motivating and inspiring people. All because this is what I want to do with MY LIFE. All of these people I have researched have different views on different things as it pertains to life. They all made their way differently and all value different things.
One of my jobs currently resides in an office building, sitting in a cubical, staring at a computer screen all day. I took this job to make some extra money while I was in school and my longer term plans are on hold. In one job, the job that I love, I get to help guide people and motivate them toward a higher quality of life. Through hard work and sacrifice we get to reach for the goals that we set for them. We meet failure along the way which teaches us perseverance and drive. It gives us a no quit mentality. Then, in this other job, I sit and stare at a computer. Counting the hours until I get to leave. Educating no one. Motivating no one. Adding value to nothing other than my wallet. Pure misery. I feel a sense of depression by days end. This experience has gotten me to really start questioning what the hell I am doing there. What the hell is anyone who hates their job doing??? WAKE UP! Life is too short to pay bills and live for the weekend. So I think to myself – ‘why am I here? Why was I, Christopher Roy, put on this planet? What is the ultimate goal of my life???’ This is a question I have been asking myself for the past 3 months, and I will lay out the conclusions I have come to. I will have one source – Myself. Along with the culmination of the experiences of my 24 years of existence. I hope anyone who reads this can tell that I am keeping this genuine and 100% real. I am not writing to argue, I am writing to express. Express a REAL message. A message that can be taken and applied by everyone.
Life has no clear definition. We all exist here together. Some people take life for granted. Some don’t. Some of us die young. Some of us don’t. No life is lived twice and no one can speak of how they viewed their life after it was over. We must define our lives and its purpose while we are here; alive and well. However, most of us do this without even knowing it. If we are to answer the question of human life and its ultimate goal then we need a non-subjective answer. When we think of a “goal” we think of either success or failure. You either achieve that goal or you do not. This is where “being content” comes into play. I’ve always said to myself, my clients, and anyone I speak to that’s trying to improve their lives – “The day you become content is the day you die.” The word content has a clear cut definition which is why it will be used in our answer. More on this later…
Expanding on the success and failure of the “goal” of life we must ask ‘How do we view a successful life?’ Obviously we can look to those who have made an impact on the world as a reference point. For example, even though he died too young I believe almost 100% of people would agree that Martin Luther King Jr lead and lived a ‘successful life.’ He made an enormous impact on the way we live today. He had a passion and a fight for giving his people [African Americans] justice and equality. Today we can see that he succeeded by looking at how different our society is as opposed to the one he lived in. Looking at the world today, would MLK be content with his life? Only he can answer.
Now let’s look at someone completely different. Let’s take a look at Michael Jordan. Someone who is still very alive. Michael has a passion for basketball. He worked harder than anyone and lived his passion. Won 6 NBA titles and now owns his own NBA team. Has his own line of athletic wear which has changed the canvas of professional basketball. At the end of his life do you think he will be content? Once again, only he will be able to answer. Leonardo Dicaprio, Muhammad Ali, Jimmy Hendrix, Mother Teresa. This list goes on and on. I am naming famous people because they are easy examples that everyone knows. What do all of these people have in common though? The answer is easy – PASSION.
They all had/have a passion for something and pursued it with everything they had. Only in living your passion is where you can make a true impact on this world. Because it is only in your passion, where you can truly apply your heart and soul. If you are to put in the amount of work that it takes to be truly successful, then you have to do so with everything you have. You will never be able to put your heart and soul into something that you hate. Something that makes you miserable. Something that makes you question why you are even doing it in the first place. Everyone has a passion in life for something. Whether it is motivating people to work hard in the gym in order to improve their quality of life, teaching kids how to shoot a basketball or even something as simple as being a mother. Everyone has something that they can put their heart and soul into and genuinely enjoy doing it. I cannot speak for everyone who has or will ever die, but I can feel confident in saying that no one has ever laid on their death bed, looking back on a life full of doing what they loved, and said they regretted it. No one has ever looked back and said “I wish I would have chosen a life of misery so I could have made more money.” To answer the ultimate goal of life you have to ask yourself what is truly important to YOU – and fight with everything you have in order to attain it.
Death is a certainty in life. It’s an unfortunate truth. But it MUST be this way. I believe we were given death for a reason – it is the ultimate source of accountability. Look at an assignment in school such as a paper for example. If students had “forever” to do a paper I can guarantee that zero of them would ever be turned in. Why would they be? The students could just keep putting it off. There is nothing to hold them accountable. They have all the time in the world to do it. But suddenly when a deadline is put on it, they have to get to work. No longer can they put off their responsibilities. Death gives us that accountability. Death is the ‘deadline’ of life and we only have a certain amount of time to do what we need to do. Just look at the word itself: “dead” – “line.” We as humans must realize that we do not have all the time in the world. With each passing second our deadline gets closer. The only difference is we don’t know when this deadline is. It could be in 50 years or it could be tomorrow. You cannot live your life as if you will live forever because that is simply not the case. If you are not living your passion and fighting for what you want most in this world, than you are working on the wrong project.
As I said I cannot answer for other people on if they viewed their life as a success. However I can give you some example answers of a life that was failed. By ‘failed’ I do not mean a complete waste. By ‘failed’ I mean a life that could have been more. It simply did not fulfill its potential. This ‘failed’ answer comes in a few different forms. When the day comes that you lay on your death bed, moments away from punching that final clock, looking back at your life and the words “What if…” “If only..” or “I wish I would’ve…” come into your head, then you have failed yourself and sold the world short. For you did not give everything you had. Now instead of going out feeling content, you’re going out with regret. Realizing it now, at this point, is unfortunately too late. You have ran out of time and your window of opportunity has closed.
I do not know what death is like, but I know that when I close my eyes for the final time I want to do it knowing I gave everything I had. Knowing that I used every second I was given and utilized it to give this world what I was meant to give it. That living my passion left this world a better place than when I came into it. When the lights go out I want those eyes closing with a sense of satisfaction as opposed to a sense of contrition.
As I said earlier, the day you feel content (or satisfied) is the day you die. That holds true for even those that are still living. The day you are content with your life is the day you stop fighting. You stop fighting for your passion. You stop fighting for your goals. You stop fighting for progress. You stop fighting to make your impact on the world. Even if you think you have ‘made it’ and achieved what you were supposed to achieve, YOU KEEP FIGHTING! If you think you have achieved your greatness then that is merely a sign that you sold yourself short. Because you have more time! Which is just a sign that there is so much more you are capable of. A sign that there is more fight in you than even you thought. Sure it will require hard work and sacrifice. But the pain of hard work endured on the road to greatness is nothing compared to the pain of regret knowing you could have been great – if only you had fought harder.
What is ‘the ultimate goal of life?’ Through my experiences these past few months and even through writing this blog it has become more and more clear to me. The ultimate goal of life is to live a life that will allow you to rest easy when you close those eyes for the final time. When the deadline of life finally presents itself – are you ready for it? Did you give everything you had to give? Will you be able to feel confident turning your life in for its final judgment? This is the only time in your life from the moment you started living that you should feel content with your life. Because it’s only at this moment, when your life ends, that your fight should end. They always say ‘You only live once.’ But if you live it with passion – once is enough.
- C – Roy