Live Your Life

What is the difference between living and existing?


When you look back on your life are you going to remember the times you decided to not try and stretch yourself and accepted what life has given you?

Or will you think back onto the moments where you gave it your best effort and either exceeded beyond all expectation or failed miserably?

  Either way, you were fully engaged in the process of finding what you were made of.  I believe that much of the difference between living and just existing stems from this search to measure ourselves.

What Am I Made Of

challenge yourselfMost people never push themselves past the level that they have to.  If everything was just handed to a person, often times they have no appreciation for what they do have and soon lose it.

Or at the very least turn it into something unhappy and undesirable.  In most people, there is a drive to find out what we are made of.  How much lies beneath the surface?  Am I the greatest? or Am I just a weak comparison for talent?

All of these questions quite naturally come to our minds.  If you have everything you need and do not feel the need to test yourself, I believe that is part of existing.  To live there is an awareness and appreciation that comes to a person when they see the connections between themselves and the rest of the world and they try to show them through their art or actions.  That is when you are living.

Living in The Moment

Budda-Quotes-1-440x440It is still a difficult thing to both explain and experience for me, but when I can get into the moment I am existing in, life makes sense.  Food tastes better, happiness is deeper, and awareness of the world around me is at an apex.  Sometimes I find myself daydreaming and push myself back into the moment and wonder why it is a constant struggle to get there.

If you don’t know what I mean by living in the moment then you have never had much exciting happen in your life.  It is simply appreciating all the sensations that are happening around you all the time.

 Seeing a wider scope of life and it usually comes from looking at the world outside of yourself. When you worry about the future or entertain regrets about the past you are living in a fantasy world that has no benefit for you today.

The past is gone and can’t come back again, and tomorrow may never come.  All you have is the moment right now.  When you enjoy that moment you will see what I mean.  All of the experiences of a life are there for you.  This I believe is living rather than just existing.

Love Not Fear

love-over-fearThere are two sides of the coin here love and fear. They are opposite but close together and if you are not careful one can turn into the other.  When you are living you are experiencing feelings of love.  Happiness, kindness, acceptance or forgiveness come from this emotion.  If you are just living often times it is fear that has infiltrated your life.

When you are afraid of being hurt, in one way or another, there is no way to live in the moment, or at least it is difficult because in reality, you would rather be anywhere else than worrying about being hurt.  Often times what we are afraid of doesn’t even exist, it is just a possibility.

This usually stems from some self-created thoughts that surround make-believe circumstances where who or what we love is taken away from us.  These fears can manifest themselves into pretty powerful things if you are not careful.  The fears we create work to take us out of the moment and away from living the life we are capable of living.  Leaving us with the ability to exist in fear.   When it comes to a choice between love and fear choose to love.

 I believe that it is much better to live than just to exist and I believe that we have that ability to choose how we experience our lives by what we focus our attention on.

What do you think is the difference between living and existing?

19 thoughts on “Live Your Life”

  1. I think that existing is simply sitting inside your comfort zone every day shying away from challenges. I think living is taking a chance on something outside your comfort zone. I feel more alive now outside of my addiction comfort zone than I did sitting inside it twiddling my thumbs! I think you are a great example of “living!” Hope you have a great evening 🙂

    1. Thank you Kira! I think you are a pretty good example yourself. I think you are right, sitting in our comfort zone is easy but not very good for your development. I was told once that in life as in everything we are either getting better or we are getting worse, there is no in between. I think it is hard to improve from your comfort zone. Yet all people really strive to find an existence within their comfort zone. So I guess the solution is to move change and challenge into your comfort zone. Thanks for the thought today and the shining example you are for others to follow! Hope you have the happiest day yet!

      1. Thank you. I think your are correct! comfort zone are appropriately named…and the media has programmed us to be all about our comfort!! It is all about challenging ourselves to bravely step out into the “unknown” and 9 times out of 10 when we do step out…we don’t go back! Thanks for your kind words…have a great day 🙂

        1. You too Kira, seems like you are doing just great expanding your comfort zone! Keep it up. There is no telling what you may accomplish!

  2. I love what you said about love and fear, Jon. I’ll surely be pondering that one for a while.
    I most certainly am alive, sometimes I push everything to the limits, other times I exist…
    Thank you for another thought provoking post.

    1. I think we all go through cycles Michelle, sometimes I have gotten comfortable and because I am safe I didn’t want to take chances or push myself. Yet life will make you push yourself, one way or another. 🙂 Thank you so much for commenting and participating. I am always so grateful to see your comments here.

  3. I agree! 🙂 Dave and I have been discussing how truly engaged you can really be from behind your cellphone lately. I’m a techie, you know, so I love my toys… but when you’re walking through a beautiful park and focused entirely on getting the best shot for instagram– you probably aren’t living that moment. We saw a mom at the mall videotaping her child– and it was such an odd moment because the child was looking at the red light on the phone, and the mom was watching the video on the phone as it recorded like it was television. They were two feet apart with a huge barrier between them.

    I got sidetracked, sorry. 😀 I guess one of my rules for living vs existing is to really focus on the importance of the moment in your hand. Sometimes that means putting down the toys.

    Great post!

    1. I try to do the same. It seems my focus is on living in the moment because today I am writing more about it I think. It w what I feel. I was really thinking about the affects of technology on our ability to live in the moment as well, I think that you have just encouraged a section on that in today’s writing. Thank you Rara for reading and taking the time to comment. I really am grateful for it!

  4. “When it comes to a choice between love and fear choose love.” I like that a lot.
    To me living is being happy no matter what you’re doing. To some it’s about taking risks and bungee jumping off a bridge, to others it could simply be watching their kids crawl around the room. Whatever it is, if it makes you happy, you’re living.

    1. I agree with you there MFE. As always insightful and such a wonderful lift to an otherwise kind of hum drum day. 🙂 Thank you for making me happy and allowing me to know that I am living.

  5. I agree with the living with love in the moment, Jon. I have realized that connections are so important. Our relationships with others can make our lives heaven or hell. I’m working on strengthening these relationships or in some cases fixing them. So glad to have a connection with you. {{{Hugs]}} Kozo

    1. Me too my friend. I think that you are one of the people who I know who really grasps the moment and understands that it isn’t what happened yesterday or what may happen tomorrow that matters but what we are experiencing today, at this very moment that counts. That is where the kindness of a person’s heart is shown and the depth of his soul. Thank you for your comments Kozo I appreciate it so much.

  6. Uhm…yeah…living in fear. Pretty much what I’ve been doing for years. I’m stepping out from it, but I still return. It’s where I am, but not where I want to stay.

    1. we all have fear in our mind. It is dealing with it that allows us to live life at our best. It takes a lot of courage to do this every day. You are quite a brave person and when you are ready you will not stay where you are. Thank you for reading and commenting I am very grateful.

      1. I am ready to not live in fear and seclusion anymore, but I am not ready to jump straight into the deep end. I’m going to wade in slowly and regain myself and my life. Thank you for all of your inspirational writing.

        1. Good luck and go at the pace you feel comfortable moving. I am always rooting for you and hope that you find your path. 🙂

    1. Of course you can feel that way. I personally am happy anytime anyone reads something I have written and is moved in any way at all. Thank you Raimy-D. for being such an awesome example for so many people!! 🙂

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