New Year’s Resolution….Don’t Die

I didn’t plan on posting anything specifically about New Year’s Resolutions. And yet, assuming a number of folks have probably broken several of their New Year’s Resolutions already, I decided I might share something on the subject.

Yesterday I attended a memorial service for a friend of over 20 years. She was only 55 when she passed away this week. Her death was unexpected – a shock. And, she was just one of two friends of mine who passed away this week.

When death comes to someone we know well, it causes us to stop and think about our mortality – or at least it should.

Book - The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch

There is someone else I’ve been thinking about who died in 2008, a person I’ve quoted in a couple of my posts. That person is Randy Pausch. You may remember him. He is best known for the YouTube video, “The Last Lecture.” And my main quote from him has been, “The key question to keep asking is, Are you spending your time on the right things? Because time is all you have.”

Make the most of the time you have been given. Each day has so much potential – it’s a gift. Treasure it. Don’t waste it. – And, Have FUN!

Randy Pausch was a dreamer. He believed in Big Dreams:
“Men first walked on the moon during the summer of 1969, when I was eight years old. I knew then that pretty much anything was possible. It was as if all of us, all over the world, had been given permission to dream big dreams…When you’re putting people on the moon, you’re inspiring all of us to achieve the maximum of human potential, which is how our greatest problems will eventually be solved.”

I want to encourage you to check out the video of Randy Pausch’s Last Lecture.” The video is 76 minutes long and worth every minute. He also wrote an excellent book that covers everything that was in the lecture. The book is 207 pages and is actually a really short, “easy read.”

Believe me, there are many unexpected things you will take away from the book or video. For example, Randy says:
“I seriously believe that I became a better teacher and colleague – maybe even a better husband – by watching Kirk run the Enterprise.”


“The reason clichés are repeated so often is because they’re so often right on the money.
Educators shouldn’t be afraid of clichés. You know why? Because kids don’t know most of them! They’re a new audience, and they’re inspired by clichés.”

If you want just a “taste” of the full lecture, here is a 10 minute summary/reprise Randy gave on Oprah.

So you’ve made some New Year’s Resolutions. You’ve set some goals. As you move forward this year; if you stumble, or maybe you’ve already fallen short on some target you’ve laid out for yourself.
Remember this mantra of Randy Pausch, “The brick walls are there for a reason. They’re not there to keep us out. The brick walls are there to give us a chance to show how badly we want something.”

The video and/or book should be viewed/read once a year. They will inspire you to make this year your very best. – Happy New Year!


About VocareMentor

Walk with the wise and become wise - Prov. 13:20 A lot of my blog comes out of the way I grew up. My parents divorced when I was 6 years old and I didn’t see much of my father. I had no understanding of how the lack of his presence in my life affected every choice I made as I grew up. Much of my adult life has been attempting to sort things out and catch up. Thus, what you’ll find on my blog are musings, thoughts, wisdom and ideas from history and pop culture. Themes: mentors, father/son, male/female, self-discovery, courage, stepping up, friendship and more.
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