September has triumphantly arrived and so far, this year we have celebrated just about every kind of day—National Ice Cream Day, Be Kind to Humankind Week, Labor Day, Siblings Day, and the list goes on. I’ve declared today Happy Ordinary Day and while it won’t be perfect, today’s well worth celebrating.
One of my favorite quotes is attributed to Johann Wolfgang Van Goethe, “Nothing is worth more than this day,” and that’s how I live my life. Today is precious, filled with opportunity, challenges, family, and friends and since there’s no way to know what the ‘morrow brings, let’s live today like we mean it.
Of course there’s a to-do list:
Stop complaining and help. If you’ve been paying attention, hurricanes, wild fires, mass shootings, flooding, ruined crops, botched immigration, famine, disease, climate changes—so many things are plaguing our world. Devastation, chaos, horror, and mayhem wreak havoc and unfortunately, sometimes there’s not much we can do about it but if you’re not a victim, we can lend a hand, a flood bucket, say a prayer, send donations, pitch in—whatever—we can do it today.
Don’t miss your life. The late Valerie Harper used this phrase during discussions about her brain cancer. One of America’s favorite actresses, Harper, who died last week, talked about facing her illness bravely and trying to make each day count. She said “The best preparation for tomorrow is doing your best today.”
Her powerful words were a wake-up call for me. I had been planning and talking about my dreams but that’s all I was doing. Planning and talking. Trust me, talk is cheap and the more you talk, the cheaper it gets. Make a plan and as author Steven Covey puts it, “start with the end in mind.” See yourself retired, finished with that project, walking in the Holy Land—whatever, but LIVE until you die.
Know your worth. I am easily distracted and I almost hate to go online because the side stories popping up always take me away from my tasks. I am a sucker for the ones about the 50 richest people, famous grandchildren, and how to wake up with a flat stomach. Like I said, I’m easily distracted; however, the richest people and their worth is not what I’m advocating here.
Knowing your worth today means knowing how much you’re valued in your family, community, and the wider world. Women loved crooner Teddy Pendergrass and they were his most loyal audiences. The late singer suffered a spinal cord injury in an automobile accident and was confined to a wheelchair. Depression and heartbreak nearly caused him to take his life. His therapist, also a quadriplegic, told Pendergrass to plan and attend his own funeral before he did anything drastic.
Pendergrass’s family and friends sat this beautiful man in the middle of the room where the casket would be, covered his face, and shared what he meant and how he had made a difference. When the service ended, Pendergrass declared that he absolutely wanted to live, and live he did, and recorded some of his most prolific music.
We don’t always remember to tell people how much they mean to us but we should, and often. Sept. 4 marks the 15th anniversary of my father’s death. That Thursday night I kissed him on the forehead as I headed home. He said “Cynthie, you know your Daddy loves you.” I replied “I know, Dad. I love you, too.” He died that Saturday of a massive heart attack– measuring his worth would take a lifetime but he died knowing he was loved and adored.
Whether you waste this day or use every minute, make today your best day ever.
How do you intend to make today your best day? Share your ideas on Twitter and Facebook at #drbondhopson.
Looking for inspiration, empowerment, uplift, straight talk, an encouraging word to brighten your day? You’ve arrived! Meet Dr. Cynthia Ann Bond Hopson, best-selling author, educator, inspirational speaker, sistergirl–she’s all that and more. All the way from Stanton, TN (you can’t get there from here) to 50 states, six continents and everything in between, she’s wise, witty and altogether wonderful. She enthusiastically invites you to slow down, sit a spell, and share a giggle or two.