If You Want to Truly Live, Stop Choosing Death

Artistic image of a man looking through glass representing death
You always have a choice

Have you ever run from what you needed most? If you have, then you may have chosen death.

When it came time to follow through on your commitment, or keep your promise, or face your fear, you ran away. A thousand excuses sprang up in your head, so you backed down, slumped your shoulders, and surrendered to comfort.

And how did you feel afterward?

I can tell you what I felt: It gave me the sharpest, ugliest, most rotten feeling. It felt one hundred times worse than failure. At least you can find glory in failure, but when you choose the safe road, it only leads to death.

The Path of Death

“We may think there is a safe road. But that would be the road of death. Then nothing happens any longer — at any rate, not the right things. Anyone who takes the safe road is as good as dead.” – Carl Jung

The things we need most in life are hidden behind walls of fear, doubt, and pain. When we finally see our potential, or what our lives could be like should we get beyond these walls, running back to what we know becomes an act of self-betrayal.

When we run away, we deny our innermost being a chance to express itself, and we starve ourselves spiritually.

What we’re not willing to face is what drives us closer to death.

How to Choose Death

  • Avoid expressing your feelings to someone you’re in love with.
  • Avoid difficult conversations.
  • Don’t try anything you feel pulled toward because people might mock you for it.
  • Believe that safety and comfort will give you a smooth, regret-free life.
  • Do what everyone expects you to do just to please them.
  • Squander your potential out of fear, laziness, or lack of self-belief.

Choose Life

There’s nothing wrong with being scared. I feel scared all the time. But if you’re going to live, you have to be willing to face what you can’t bear to face. That’s the path of life. That’s where you’ll find the glory, the nectar, and the summits.

Let this be a reminder that whatever you’re avoiding right now? It’s probably what you need most.

“The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure you seek.” – Joseph Campbell

You can find countless posters, memes, and YouTube videos telling you to live courageously. But how many of us walk that talk? How many of us go the whole way and face what we need to face?

Living life on your own terms may be one of the most difficult things you can do.

But think of the possibilities.