The Art of Living 1- How To Live Your Life

Plan for a lifetime, but live in the moment.
Kanayo Aniegboka kani

After a lifetime of cohesion, a group of friends finally dragged me to a hangout where a couple of people get together to just deliberate on life issues (my kind of hang out), It was fun, but I had to leave early.  Before I left though, something came up that caught my interest, we were discussing money: making it, saving it and managing it, and as is usual in a group discussion, we had extremes.  Some people felt you should live a modest life and save all you can, someone suggested saving up to fifty percent of all your income. Others on the other hand felt you should spend as much as you can today and let tomorrow worry about itself. According to this school, why store up for an uncertain tomorrow and suffer today that you are sure of. They even went as far as saying that it makes no sense saving for your children, they should make their own money (harsh, men, harsh!). Then they were the moderates like me who said, “save some and blow the rest, life must be lived today”.

I have found out that in life, all you get to exercise is ‘now, today, this moment’. Whatever you should have experienced in the past but did not, you will never have the opportunity to experience as you should have, and whatever future you do not plan for now, you will not have when the future shows. When I was younger, even though I had a relatively good life, I grew up much too fast because I made friends with much older folk. This caused me to miss out on quite a few of the silliness my age mates enjoyed at the time. Two decades down the line, I find myself wishing I could do some of those things that I missed out on, and no matter how hard I try to dismiss the feeling, because I can’t say “been there, done that”, it really sucks. Life is meant to be lived in the present, whatever you miss out on in the journey to your grave, is lost for good.  We were not meant to live just for some distant unknown future, or for a fading past, we are meant to live all our lives equally for all times, the possible best for each season. We are meant to learn from and ignore the past, live and relish the present, plan and anticipate the future.

I’m sure by now you’re probably wondering what past, present and future has to do with savings. I believe in the age old wisdom of saving for the future, and I even have the quote “starve now and eat later or eat now and starve later” hung somewhere on my wall. I believe in saving for tomorrow because:
·         Saving gives you comfort in the future; Your life should get better with time, not worse nor should it remain the same. Taking a little from what you earn today to invest in tomorrow would make the experience of tomorrow richer.
·         You cannot predict the future; you may have some mishap like; a loss of job, economic meltdown, theft, or natural disaster or an opportunity to invest, that would require an immediate response. A nest egg can save your life at such times. I believe in the principle that at all times, you should have enough resources that can keep you comfortable for at least six months to a year should you lose your job today.    
·         Saving provides you lump sums of money; you may decide to acquire a desire sometime in the future, saving part of your income can come up to a tidy sum in the future, which can get you; a car, house, dream vacation or a desire you’ve had for a while… which you could not afford on your regular income.

On the other hand, I always advice “make today count” I wish to live all the life that is in today, today. I realise that life does not ‘roll over data’ especially for those things that are time-sensitive. Anything that is meant for today that you do not get to do today is kinda lost forever.

Kanayo Aniegboka

Kani is a Nigerian born and based minister, public speaker, entrepreneur and life coach. His keen and unique perspective to life issues makes him a refreshing voice to listen to. He currently serves as the Executive Coordinator of House on the Rock - Word House and sits on the board of a number of companies.

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