You are lucky to be alive today. Right now.
Over the past years, the world has become an incredible place to be a part of. You might have recently gone through some good and bad times. Maybe yes. Maybe no.
But, there are some things you must know. When you know them, you’ll value your life. In fact, you’ll value it more than you’ve ever done. First, let me start with the thing that may seem less important to you:
YOU CAN READ AND WRITE
At least, you can read this! Someone has taken the time to teach you how to. These are the two most important skills you can learn. And you’ve done that.
I read and write a lot. Sometimes, people wonder why I read when there are other things I could do with my time. They think: “Maybe, he’s doing that to show he’s intelligent.”
I know a lot of people who struggle with reading. Their inability to read doesn’t mean they aren’t intelligent. For example, John Corcoran, who wrote The Teacher Who Couldn’t Read, is a very intelligent man. He graduated from college, became a popular high school teacher and a successful businessman. And he did these without being able to read.
Now, you may assume that if a man like John Corcoran can succeed without reading, why is it important?
If you can take the time to read John’s book, you’ll see that he felt shame, loneliness and fear before he learned to read. He was able to succeed in spite of this major handicap because he was a man of intelligence, ability and determination. But make no mistake, it was a handicap that made life harder and less enjoyable.
Adults who can’t read well won’t understand the instructions on a medicine bottle. Filling out applications becomes impossible without help. Reading road or warning signs is also difficult. Day-to-day activities that many people take for granted become a source of frustration, anger and fear.
Reading develops the mind. It’s like a muscle. It needs exercise. When you can’t read, it’s difficult to understand what people say. It leads to misunderstandings. This can lead to job loss, marriage breakups, and other disasters – small and great.
Reading is very important because words – spoken and written – are the building blocks of life.
You’re what you are, right now, as a result of what you’ve read and heard and believed about yourself. People, families, relationships and even nations are built from words. Just think about it. You can read this, right now. It shows you’re lucky.
It shows you have the power to change your life.
Read the good things. Hear the positive things. And you’ll be amazed.
YOU HAVE SURVIVED INFANCY
Many people do survive infancy. You survived it. But some aren’t as lucky as you and I.
In countries like Sierra Leone, Angola, Chad, there are ninety-five infant deaths for every one thousand newborns. Countries like the United States, the United Kingdom and Canada have five infant deaths for every one thousand new babies.
You’re quite lucky to survive infancy.
When you were born, you were such a little creature that cared about nothing but food. You were protected and you’re alive today. Now, you can reasonably expect to live sixy eight years – and even longer if you have access to health care and look after yourself.
YOU HAVE ACCESS TO THE INTERNET
No one had internet thirty years ago. And many people still don’t have it. I’ll assume that – because you have access to the internet now – you have it. The internet may not look like a big deal to you, but you’re so lucky to have it.
- With the internet, you have access to the biggest library in the world.
- Many books are available online.
- You can gain experience from others by reading blogs. By participating in online communities like Quora and Stack Overflow, Reddit and Facebook Groups.
- You can learn anything you want online.
Just in the past few weeks, I’ve picked up some coding skills. Now, I can build a simple, minimalist web page. This is something I couldn’t do a few weeks ago.
I’ve taught myself a lot of skills using the internet. And today, I make a full-time income through these skills.
Just last night, I video called my niece on Skype. It’s been seven years she was born, and I haven’t seen her real life due to long distance. But she knows me. She knows how I look like. She knows who I am. All that is possible, thanks to the internet. We have so much connection even though we haven’t seen face-to-face. That wouldn’t have been possible without the internet.
With the internet, I can look out for facts and information on any topic under the sun. I also can learn about other cultures and countries before I visit there.
Yes, I can also determine the credibility and reliability of any source with the help of the internet.
Gone are the days when you have to stand in a long queue. Today, we have online booking. You can sit back and reserve tickets while sipping a cup of tea. This wasn’t possible thirty years ago.
With the internet, you can start a blog. Write about a topic you’re passionate about. And make some money.
A lot of people are doing that right now.
What you can do with the internet is endless.
YOU LIVE IN THE BEST ERA FOR MEN & WOMEN
Throughout most of the human history, only one in seventeen men ever had children before dying. You live in an era where men can marry women and have children if they want, and can. It wasn’t easy to be a man in the old days.
A few wealthy men shut the others out of the sexual marketplace so effectively. If a man isn’t wealthy, he must be a slave. But it’s much easier to be a man these days. It’s harder for a few powerful men to snatch up all the women for themselves. So today, every man and woman can feel truly and fully loved and cared for by their partners. You’re so lucky to be here at this time than thousands of years ago.
But, it isn’t just about men. Women are becoming more and more powerful, gaining the rights that they have deserved all along. Equal rights. Although we are not there yet, generations of young men and women are fighting for women’s rights for equal pay, for abortion, for same rights as the opposite-sex.
YOU LIVE IN THE MOST PEACEFUL TIME IN HUMAN HISTORY
You’re so fortunate to be living the most peaceful era of human history.
Men are less likely to be drafted into military service. And less likely to die a violent death on the battlefield.
If you turn on your TV, you’ll see challenges the world face every day. The headlines are killings and wars in the Middle East and some parts of the world. All negative.
Recently, I started watching less news because there’s always some wars going on and I can’t control it. But the fact is that this is the most prosperous and progressive era in human history.
That may surprise you a bit but it’s the truth.
There hasn’t been a state war for a while now. States wars tend to kill a lot of people, if not tens of millions. What we’ve seen during the last few years are all civil wars (wars between citizens of a country). Countries are more cooperative today and working hard to resolve civil wars.
ONE THING YOU SHOULD ALWAYS KEEP IN MIND
You’re incredibly lucky to be alive right now. Don’t ever forget that. Here’s something I want you to take away from this article:
You are where you are today because thousands of generations who came before you worked hard to get you here.
Always remember the scientists who wondered, experimented and failed many times to save our lives.
Remember those inventors who make the world a better place to live.
Think about the soldiers who died in wars to make the world a more peaceful place to live for all of us.
How are you making the world a better place? Are you just complaining about how unlucky you’ve been It’s time to wake up and realize that you’re so lucky to be alive right now.
Do something to make the world a better place.