In school, we’re studying the existential philosophies of psychology, including a bit about Viktor Frankl, who developed the style of psychology known as logotherapy.
I’ve long been a fan of Frankl ever since I read Man’s Search for Meaning in my twenties and again in my thirties. There are a few books I try to read each decade, and this is one of them. It never fails to inspire me, sober me and push me toward pursuing my own meaning within my unique life.
The entire book is quotable, but this year, one sentence stands out to me at this point in my life:
I appreciate that this quote extends beyond the typical: live like you were dying.
It kind of says: live like you died, saw your mistakes and came back to live another day - and do it better. It’s saying that we can live with hindsight, now. I think, at a certain, age, this actually becomes possible.
If I think about this quote, I see things now that I can change so that I won’t have quite so many regrets later.
I don’t think it’s about perfection or trying to squeeze the meaning out of every single tiny moment. I don’t think it’s about never making mistakes or living in a heightened state of awareness all the time. But if I think about this quote and view my life as a second-chance in the here-and-now, it does make me wonder: what would I change?
What would you change?
I hope everyone is having a beautiful Sunday. It’s finally fall here in NC. It changed seasons (literally) overnight. Yesterday, I wore a jacket for Sandy’s nightly walk. It was crisp and we all somehow had more energy. And though I sometimes wish I lived in a big city with art museums and ballet performances and true espresso, I was grateful last night to live in a place where I can look up and see so many stars.
I know. I’m off to light my scented candles and bake those heart-shaped hand pies.