It’s an old question that we’ve all most likely been asked in some course or book or by a friend or colleague.

“If you were 92 years-old and on your deathbed,
what advice would you give your 2011 self?”

Last week, I had the privilege to hear Marshall Goldsmith at a professional meeting. Marshall is recognized as one of the top executive coaches in the world, working exclusively with CEOs and those readying to become CEOs. I’ve heard him speak before. And, I live and do the work he does. But, his question still struck a cord with me.

So, I’m asking you the question today. What advice would the 92 year-old you give YOU today? Would you say:

  • Work more hours?
  • Make more money?
  • Get more recognition?
  • Buy a bigger house, car, etc.

Or, would the 92 year-old you say:

  • Really listen to the people in your life?
  • Help the people you see?
  • Enjoy nature?
  • Use your talents more fully?
  • Spend more time and attention with your loved ones?
  • Have more confidence in who you are?
  • Be kind to yourself and others?
  • Be patient with yourself and others?

What would you say?

Now, I’m not advocating at all that you reduce your consumption or stop seeking advancement. Not at all. What I think is critical is to stop and consider whether you are creating the experiences and results that matter most to you–everyday.

Similarly, in my model of creating remarkable results, I often push clients to be clear about what they want, looking to the future outcomes most important to them. Your 92 year-old self is just another window into the same clarifying work.

Today, notice opportunities to create what is most important to you. Let me know what you see.