There’s only one real topic on people’s minds and tongues today and that is the very sad passing of the music legend David Bowie. He was, according to the information I have seen in various news feeds / channels, surrounded by his family when he passed away.
His death and the commentary surrounding it, unleashed two trains of thought in my mind.
The first one involved my Mum… and my Dad. They have both been ill, under the weather over Christmas… Mum stopped eating and walking and had to be moved around in a wheel chair. Rather a dramatic turn after her constant pacing of the ward in the hospital. And my Dad, unsurprisingly, also became ill with chest infections and bronchitis, emotion, exhaustion and lack of adrenalin finally taking.
Wonderful friends of my Mum rallied round to support my Dad and visited Mum, while Dad had a well earned rest to recover. Over the Christmas period, while we were in full festivities and excitement, a few photos came through of my Mum. Just a millisecond glance of them shocked me and I had to delete them….
To get through Christmas and be the fun, social Mummy (and wife/friend) I had to be for my boys, I had to keep my emotions under wraps and my Mum in her jewelled box, with her kittens and her chocolates.
But on hearing about David Bowie, I have a sudden urge to be south, to be with her, to see her and to see my Dad too. Family. While I have my own family here in Yorkshire, I still have a family in Buckinghamshire.
It is time to open the box and lean into the emotions.
The second train of thought, involved death and family and a technique I read about in a fantastic book called ‘The Tools’ by Phil Stutz and Barry Michels. It focuses on 5 main tools you can use to unlock your potential.
It is the final ‘Tool’ that stuck with me, or struck the biggest cord with me: Jeopardy.
‘Jeopardy’ is a technique you can use to help raise your will power, to push through any fears or doubts you have, when in your gut, you know what you need or want to do is right, but you are scared.
Imagine yourself in the future (hopefully a very long way in the future) lying on your deathbed, surrounded by your family. If you in your present state were also present and you asked your future self the question – should I? or what’s your opinion… How would they answer?
It is highly unlikely they would procrastinate… With only days, hours, moments left, your future self will understand the importance of the present moment, given they have so few left.
It is highly likely they would tell you to get on and do it…. Take a leap of faith! What have you got to lose? Do what you love… enjoy every moment you can!
This deathbed perspective can create an immense sense of urgency, give you the courage to get over your fears and follow your dreams.
I wonder if David Bowie used that technique through the course of his life… he was a chameleon in the pop world, reinventing himself, taking crazy risks, trying new things…
He is a lot like marmite to many – love his music, or not… but you have to admire him for spending a lifetime doing what he loved.
While the thoughts of many are that he was taken too soon, I am confident as he lay surrounded by his loving family, rather than thoughts of regret, I am confident they were ones of happiness and pride for what he created and the legacy he left behind.