What Makes a Ridiculously Awesome Life? 3 Things. That’s it.

Most of time, it has little to do with your work.

Karthik Rajan


Photo by Mohamed Nohassi

In 2006, I picked up a book by Robin Sharma — the title sounded interesting. It read, The Monk who sold his Ferrari. As I was reading through it, one thought made me sit up — “what if today is your last, how will you live it differently?”

That thought deftly tilted my perspective. I have been noodling on it ever since. And I spotted a trend.

Through the years, my vision of what I would do on that day changes. On the other hand, right at that edge of life, one consistent magic happens. Something I find difficult to crystallize in a normal day — clarity of purpose.

My aha — what is a blur looking forward is lucid and crystal clear when we look back on the life that could have been. Or as Steve Jobs famously echoed at Stanford Commencement speech — “dots connect after the fact.”

Here are three.

1. Pursue. Express. Human spirit says so

What is true for you and me is true for our elderly on the throttles of their life journey. Their regrets are a powerhouse of insights. What happens if you can poll a pool of them?

A nurse Bronnie Ware interviewed them and collated exactly that — their dazzling array of life yearnings. Here is the essence.

1. I wish I pursued my dreams and aspirations, and not the life others expected of me

2. I wish I didn’t work so hard

3. I wish I had the courage to express my feelings and speak my mind

4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends

5. I wish I had let myself be happier

In the clutter of our walls or fridge door — held by magnets or pins, these sharp words stare back as shining examples of what truly matters.

It is one thing to ferret deep within and keep it real. It is quite another vantage point to know how we are perceived — on a life well led. In the obituaries.

2. Give — Obituary Data says so.



Karthik Rajan

Stories to fuel your mind. Theme: life’s hidden treasures in plain sight. Goal: Warm tone, solid content, crisp stories. About me: one google search away.