What It Really Means To “Live Every Day Like It’s Your Last”

What It Really Means To “Live Every Day Like It’s Your Last” ©iStock/Georgijevic

Countless singers, poets, and armchair philosophers have told you to live every day like it’s your last. After all, you never know what’s just around the corner, good or bad, so you should take full advantage of every moment you’ve got. That way, you’ll make the most out of your life. Of course, that doesn’t mean you should do whatever you want without thinking about the consequences. This is what the old saying really means:

  1. Take risks. If you’ve always wanted to jump out of a plane, get a parachute and take the plunge. If you want to do something a little more tame, you can get up in front of a crowd to sing karaoke. Take risks, no matter how big or small they are. They’ll pay off in the end.
  2. Express your feelings. If you like a guy, ask him out. If you want to kiss him, then press your lips up against his. Don’t hold back, because you’ll feel better about going after what you want than sitting around, wondering what would have happened if you did.
  3. Stop procrastinating. If you have a list of chores to do, don’t put them off for any longer. Get your paperwork done, do your laundry, and make that phone call you’ve been dreading. Don’t wait until tomorrow to do something that you could finish today.
  4. Say “yes.” If your friends invite you out, don’t turn them down so you can stay home and watch Netflix. Even if the party sounds boring at first, it could end up being one of the best nights of your life. You’ll never know, unless you say “yes” and meet up with your pals.
  5. Follow your dreams. Instead of waiting until “the time is right” to send out job applications, do it today. Apply for the position you’ve always wanted. If you have to, quit your current job so you can focus on your true passion.
  6. Live in the present. When you’re out with friends, don’t think about the fight you had with your parents yesterday or all of the work you need to do tomorrow. Live in the moment. That way, you’ll feel a lot less stressed.
  7. Get in touch with old friends. You’d want to get in touch with old friends before you died, wouldn’t you? Then what are you waiting for? Give them a call right now. There’s nothing stopping you from reconnecting.
  8. Appreciate what you have. Don’t focus on the negative pieces of your life. Try to think about how lucky you are to have the friends, family, and job that you have. When you’re positive, life will feel a whole lot brighter.
  9. Don’t sweat the small stuff. If you knew you were going to die tomorrow, you wouldn’t be all that embarrassed over the fact that you fell off your chair during a meeting today, would you? That’s the way you should always behave. Don’t worry about silly little things, because it’s just a waste of time.
  10. Enjoy your life. At the end of each day, you want to be able to say that you’re happy. So if you’d rather stay inside and eat cookies instead of doing any of the things on this list, go for it. Do whatever makes you feel the most alive.
Holly Riordan is a writer from Long Island, New York who has authored several science fiction and horror books. A graduate of Stony Brook University, she has spent nearly a decade writing for publications including Thought Catalog, Huffington Post, Teen Vogue, and more. You can find her on Instagram @hollyrio and Twitter @hollyyrio.