"Carpe diem" - "Seize the day"


A while ago a man who attended my CHI Seminar with his wife sent me this email:

 Re Randy Pausch's three words of advice  "Tell the truth"  and "All the time".  My Dad said, shortly after our Mum died, that the two saddest words in the English language are "If only".   He felt it particularly poignantly, because after 50 plus years of married life (not bliss), there was still unfinished business.  My wife and I both tend to live by the Latin maxim/rejoinder to this:  "Carpe diem" - "Seize the day". 

We are all blessed with the gift of life and it is our responsibility to make the most of it while we can – because mostly we don’t know which day will be our last.

For those living with a life threatening illness, they might have a clearer idea of when that day might be.

Dr Charlie Teo

I’m sure many of you have heard of Dr Charlie Teo – brilliant Sydney neurosurgeon who often has the opportunity to extend the life of somebody suffering from a brain tumour.  Dr Teo has a wonderful philosophy on life and is someone I admire greatly.  I have read a book by Susan Wyndham about Dr Teo and one of his patients. Here is an excerpt from that book – from Page 84:

Many times he has said, in slightly different ways, ‘I have realised the power of the mind is incredibly important to your general wellbeing and the ability of the human body to fight disease.  I don’t know why doctors find this so hard to accept but they do.  I think a lot of patients have done well not because I’ve operated on them, but because I’ve offered them hope and I’ve given them something to be positive about.  It can’t just be the surgery because anybody can do the surgery I do.  They all leave in a very positive frame of mind: “We’re going to beat this.”  I encourage that and I nurture it and I think it’s instrumental.  I think I have gained more understanding of the mind and the power of the mind not through looking at the brain, but through the dealings with my patients.’

Sandy Interjects and quotes Dr Bernie Siegel "There is no such thing as 'false hope'. There is Hope and Hopelessness - Hope is the Live Message"

Charlie’s holistic philosophy is simple, logical and refreshing, but many doctors still find it unprofessional.  He encourages his patients to exercise, follow a healthy diet, meditate, remain positive and, if they have religious beliefs, to pray.  He also recommends surgery, sometimes repeatedly over many years, on tumours that others have declared inoperable or the operation pointless because the patient was going to die anyway.

Critics in the profession say Charlie gives false hope to hopeless cases with his pep talks and rush to operate.  He argues that those surgeons often abandon patients when it is possible to save some and give many others more time, comfort and support.  He makes it clear that a malignant tumour will ultimately prove fatal but that is no reason not to fight.

‘While there’s quality of life, there’s hope,’ he says.  If people aren’t willing to die, I will certainly not condemn them to a death sentence.  People I’ve operated on that really should have died within six months, a lot of them are still alive and a lot survived two, three, four years.  If you can give someone six months extra … who knows?  The cure might be right around the corner.

Focus on the fact that some people live

‘You tell people that their tumour could come back and if they want to absorb it, fine, but try not to focus on that.  Focus on the fact that some people live and some people live a long time and why don’t you just pretend you’re that person?  If you’re going to be one of the people who lives four years instead of six months, wouldn’t it be terrible to live those four years thinking, “S..., I’m going to die next week,” and four years comes up and you’ve wasted the time dying rather than living?’

Lucius Seneca

Lucius Seneca was a Spanish-born philosopher of Rome who lived in the first century A.D. and was one of the prominent sages of his time.  "On The Shortness Of Life" is an essay he addressed to a friend and an extract from that writing is ….

It is not that we have so little time but that we lose so much. Life is long enough and our allotted portion generous enough for our most ambitious projects if we invest it all carefully. But when it is squandered through luxury and indifference, and spent for no good end, we realize it has gone, under the pressure of the ultimate necessity, before we were aware it was going. So it is: the life we receive is not short but we make it so; we are not ill provided but use what we have wastefully.

Once again the underlying message is “Seize the Day”.

Dr Mike Roizen and Dr Mehmet Oz

I receive a Newsletter from Dr Mike Roizen and Dr Mehmet Oz and this is what they say regarding having a Life Purpose for living longer:

Want to live longer? Then you’d better have a really good idea of what you’re living for.

In a study of older adults, those who lived a goal-driven life were 57% less likely to die during the 5-year study period, compared with those who didn’t have much direction or purpose.

How a Purpose Protects

Are you making plans for the future?  Is there something that you’re actively trying to achieve?  Does your life have meaning?  A resounding yes to these questions could mean you get more time on earth to accomplish things.  Having a purpose in life was so helpful in a recent study that it even appeared to improve the longevity of people with depression, disabilities, chronic medical conditions, or financial difficulties. Are you happy?

Other Tools for a Longer Life

Having a purpose in life can boost your emotional well-being, which in turn may lower the risk for chronic disease.  Stay young, active and driven with these additional live-longer habits:

·  Take stock – of your weight, blood pressure and heart rate 

·  Stand up – sitting all day may take a bite out of your personal timeline.

·  Slack off – you might live longer if you indulge a few frivolous whims.

·  Load up – foods high in vitamins C and E may lengthen your life.

So ian, I really believe in the CHI Seminar so that's why I am saying it again. It is all about finding your very own Life’s Purpose and developing all the tools to work towards it - check it out at www.lifepurpose.com.au.

If you missed it and want to come to Vietnam with me (or know someone else that would like to) then know that I plan to do the Vietnam Author’s Tunnel Rat Tour again on the 26 Oct 2012 (you can read about my Vietnam report here) and then I plan to go on to Laos on 3 Nov 2012 for about a week (you can come with me if you like) – just let me know.

All the best


Success Stories

 I received this endorsement a few days ago 
"Sandy has a perception of life that is very difficult to describe. No one has in my opinion neared nor overcome the life situations he has experienced. He shares this courage in a very powerful and unassuming way. A true inspiration. I look forward to once again shaking his hand and listening to him speak and meditate with him in that peaceful place. His book Piece of Mind is a great life handbook to jolt you out of complacency, greed and self doubt." BV NSW

I have just completed a 12 week course in Holistic Counselling, Chair Yoga and Meditation teaching and am now a certified practitioner. I love my meditation, and since coming to your CHI seminar which must be 5 years ago now at least, my life has completely changed. I am so happy with the directions in which I am journeying!
I plan on having a wonderful “next 40 years” enjoying my new profession and my life I am exactly where I am supposed to be spiritually and physically and emotionally.

From a person buying my "downloadable online course"
Tomorrow morning--I think we are nine hours behind you--I'll place my order. I definitely want to have your course. Your authenticity and no-frills presentation is in stark contrast to all the phony "gurus" in the coaching/consultant/adviser business. K - from 9 hrs time difference.

I have Dad listening to your CDs (and he plays them every day). My wife and I listen to your CDs every night when going to bed, and as often as we can in the morning. I easily get to my “Peaceful Place” every time I meditate. I am looking forward to Meditating more over the holidays, as we are spending the time at home.
My son is still goal setting, but needs a little pushing to use his Peaceful Place regularly.We have been telling our friends about the CHI seminar, and encouraging our daughter to do it as well.


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