Let’s talk about one obvious thing that many people tend to overlook. Even for those of you that live in one of the first world countries life expectancy is about 80-85 years. That’s about as much as one can hope for at this stage of the human progress.
How much time do you actually have to live your life? Generously assuming the productivity age range of 15 to 85 and 8 hours of sleep every day we’ve got about (85 - 15) * 365 * 16 = 408800 hours of life. Wow, that’s a lot, isn’t it?
The saying has it that to become really good at anything one has to practice for 10000 hours. Granted, this is just a very basic rule of thumb, but that means we can only be good at 40 different things.
I don’t know about you, but I have spent a lot, and I mean a lot of time playing Warcraft 3. Such a deep and fascinating game! I used to come back home from school, plug in my dial-up modem before my mom gets home and put in a solid 3 hours of play. Dude, I was no joke! I even took the 5th place at one of the local 25 man tournaments once or twice.
There goes one of my 40 acquirable talents, though. I am better than 99.9% of the world at something I’ll likely never use, and I’m never getting that time back. Was it worth it? Maybe, maybe not. The only thing that I can do now is to choose what to work on next wisely.
The point is, it’s never late to start doing what fulfills you. And sooner is better than later. I still play games casually. I still watch TV shows. But I’m doing it much less now. Why? Because I know that meeting new people, working on the projects that can change my life or even better, lives of many other people, satisfies me more.
Think about how much time you have left. Do the calculations. What would you do if you knew you only had 5 or 10 years left? Start doing it, whatever ‘it’ means to you today. We all have an opportunity to leave a legacy, tiny or notable. What’s going to be yours?