7 Ways That People Die Before They’re Actually Dead

This might as well be our view of the world if we choose to die before we’re actually dead.

Everyone dies. Not everyone really lives.” -William Sachs Wallace

Scary title for a blog post, isn’t it?

I hope so.

In reality, we should all fear death, but not in the way that you may think.

What I’m referring to is dying before we’re dead.

Sadly, many people die thousands of little deaths before they finally make it official.

Without any doubt, experiencing those tiny deaths on a daily basis is not only extremely painful, but those tiny deaths also make it so much harder for us to live our best lives before we reach the grave for good.

And if that wasn’t bad enough, those tiny deaths could also cause us to reach the grave much sooner than necessary too.

This path doesn’t have to be for us.

If you’ve ever experienced that sickening feeling when a tiny piece of you dies by not fully honoring yourself, this post is for you.

Below are seven ways that many people experience death before reaching the grave.

If you’re experiencing any of these, commit to making today the day where you fully reclaim your life.

The man/woman staring back at you in your bathroom mirror will thank you immensely for it.

1. Keeping Toxic People in Your Life

The first time someone shows you who they are, believe them.” -Maya Angelou

This silent killer is listed first because it can wreak havoc in so many areas of our lives if we don’t handle it quickly and with ruthless precision.

This might sound harsh, but toxic people are like a disease.

Seriously, there’s no need to sugarcoat this for a minute longer. If there has ever been a topic in this world’s history that needs realness, it’s this one.

Speaking of keeping it real–no sane person would ever allow cancer, or any other toxic illness, to roam through their bodies untreated, right?

We must view toxic people in the exact same way.

Just like cancer, the best solution and hope for recovery with toxic people is complete removal.

If you have determined that a person in your life is toxic and deeply harming your life, we have to accept that it doesn’t matter who it is—your mom, your spouse, your boss, your childhood friend, or anyone else—they need to be removed from your life without apologies or hesitation.

Failure to do so could cause you to slowly die inside long before it’s your time.

Simply put, some people need to be loved from a distance.

2. Believing the Naysayers

Someone’s opinion of you does not have to be your reality.” –Les Brown

Haters, Dream Stealers, Naysayers—it doesn’t matter what we choose to call them, their deadly effect is still the same.

As most of you know by now, dealing with haters is fairly simple process. But it’s much more challenging if the naysayers are “well-meaning” people who we actually like or love.

Perhaps it’s time to look at this “well-meaning” stuff a little deeper than we have before.

What if you could have left your dysfunctional relationship and found true love, but you believed your well-meaning friends who told you that all of the good men/women are already taken?

What if you could have reclaimed your health and fitness, but you believed your well-meaning family members who reminded you of your many past failures losing weight, so you quit before you even started?

What if you could have left your horrendous job that is causing you numerous sleepless nights, but you didn’t leave because you believed the well-meaning experts who advised you not to quit your job in this economy?

Here’s the truth of the matter: Advice from anyone (yes, including our loved ones) that would drive us in the opposite direction of our dreams isn’t “well-meaning,” it’s dangerous.

Your dreams are here for a reason. They are your life blood. They don’t belong to your spouse, your parents, your kids, your friends, your pastor, or your coworkers—they belong to you.

You don’t have justify your life dreams to anyone.

If nothing else, please believe this: Trying to silence that persistent voice inside of all of us that is nudging us to go after our best lives, will not work.

It will never work.

Doing so will only cause us to die a little bit inside each time we try to smother its impassioned cry to choose more for our lives.

It’s never too late to listen to that voice.

Start today.

3. Being Happy Later

Happiness is not something you postpone for the future; it is something you design for the present.” –Jim Rohn

Few things are more effective at slowly sucking away our life force than making the devastating choice to delay our happiness.

Unfortunately, many people make this choice on a daily basis.

They wait until they leave their loveless relationship and find true love before they give themselves permission to be happy.

They wait until their bathroom scale, bank account, or amount of Twitter followers displays a certain number before they give themselves permission to be happy.

They wait until their bully boss either gets fired or quits before they give themselves permission to be happy.

Sadly, that is not how happiness works. Not even close, actually.

Chasing happiness outside of ourselves is like eating cotton candy for energy.

Sure, it might make us feel energized or happy temporarily, but it will never nourish us as deeply or for as long as we thought it would.

So, we keep chasing happiness, and if so, just like stuffing our faces with cotton candy for a temporary high, we’ll keep slowing dying in the process.

There is a much better way.

We can reject the fairy tale of being “happy later,” and make the life-affirming choice to be happy now.

It may not always be easy, but the effort will always be more than worth it.

True, long-lasting happiness will never be found outside of ourselves.

That’s because real happiness is, and always will be, an inside job.

The good news is that for this job, you’ll always be the boss.

4. Chronically Complaining

You don’t make progress by standing on the sidelines whimpering and complaining. You make progress by implementing ideas.” –Shirley Chisholm

There is no habit in the world that is more useless and destructive to our overall health and well-being than the life-destroying act of chronically complaining.

Not only is it bad for our health (mental and otherwise), it negatively affects our ability to creatively solve the problems in our lives, it makes us dumber (yes, for real), and maybe worst of all, it is also damaging to the health of the people who are stuck listening to our complaints on a daily basis.

If you are addicted to the life-stealing habit of chronically complaining, there may be no better gift that you can give yourself (and to the poor folks who are stuck listening to your complaining) right now than the gift of “Complaining Detox.”

Seriously, try it.

Challenge yourself after you’re done reading this to go 24-hours, a full weekend, or even an entire week without complaining.

Trust me, you’ll be shocked by the results if you commit to it.

As a former chronic complainer myself, I can say with confidence that not only can a “Complaining Detox” completely change your life, but it could even save it too.

5. Not Valuing Time

 What you do today is important because you’re exchanging a day of your life for it.” –Anonymous

This life-stealer isn’t nearly as obvious as the other points listed above, but left unchecked, it can deeply affect your life in a very negative way.

Time is unlike any resource in the world.

It can’t be multiplied, borrowed, or recovered after you lose it. Time can only be spent. That’s it. Once it’s gone, it’s gone forever.

That’s why we cannot wait a moment longer than necessary to live our best lives. We literally don’t have the time to wait to do it later.

This has to be done now.

Unfortunately, I used to be the guy who believed that everything could be done later.

I could always manage my finances later. I could always go the the gym and eat healthier later. I could always tell my loved ones how much I cared about them later. I could always be happier later. I could always take control of my life later.

It was the insane and misguided idea of “later” that kept me broke, out of shape, unhealthy (emotionally, mentally, and physically), and totally unhappy.

In other words, all that “later” did for me was keep me miserable now and slowly dying inside.

Speaking of dying, have you ever spoken to someone who is on their deathbed?

I have.

If you haven’t, trust me on this: One thing that a dying person will never tell you is to put off your dreams, happiness, and best life until “later.”

Our lives are meant to be lived now.

Please don’t wait until you’re on your deathbed to realize this. At that point it truly is too late.

There is no “Rewind” button in life.

We cannot get those hours or those years back once they’re gone. That’s why it is critical that we make them count while we’re here.

If we choose to waste our money, we’re only temporarily out of cash—sure, that sucks, but we can recover from that.

But if we choose to waste our time, then we’re actually losing a precious part of our lives.


Sadly, there’s no recovering from that.

6. Living in Fear

A coward dies a thousand times before his death, but the valiant taste of death but once.”  –William Shakespeare

There is no need to sugarcoat this at all: fear is an absolutely life-destroying force.

More than any force in the universe, it has caused millions of people to die millions of tiny and needless deaths on a daily basis.

When I say “fear,” I’m not talking about healthy fears, like the ones that will stop you from doing something stupid like swallowing a lit firecracker or jumping into shark-infested waters while holding a raw steak.

This is solely about the unhealthy fears that speak to you in a way that arouses intense self-doubt.

For example:

“You’re really going to give a presentation at the next all-staff meeting? If you fail, you’ll look like a complete idiot in front of the entire company. Don’t do it.”

“Remember the last time when you tried to ask a girl for a date and you got completely shot down in a horrifically embarrassing fashion? Don’t do it.”

“You want to start your own business/blog/insert awesome project here? People far more talented than you are have failed miserably when they tried. Don’t do it.”

I wish that I could tell you that I could make the voices go away. I wish that I could tell you that it’s possible to eradicate fear from your life forever.

Unfortunately, fear isn’t going anywhere, and that’s okay.

Being “fearless” is a hot, steaming pile of B.S. There is not one person walking the face of this earth who is fearless.

As I’ve said many times before, courage is not the absence of fear, it’s about feeling the fear and doing the damn thing anyway.

It’s cool to feel fear. What’s not cool is allowing that fear to control you.

Believe me, living our best lives is going to require us to do some scary stuff.

Count on it.

That’s because inside of the cave that we fear, lies the treasure that we seek.

7. Failing to Take Personal Responsibility

The best day of your life is the one on which you decide your life is your own. No apologies or excuses. The gift of life is yours. It’s an amazing journey, and you alone are responsible for the quality of it.” –Dan Zadra

The most important point of all, and quite possibly the hardest one to master, has been left for last.

There is little to no hope of avoiding a slow death at the hands of the previous 6 points above if you fail to master this one.

We can all agree that none of our lives are flawless, right?

I’m confident that in less than five minutes, we could all list at least 20 issues that we would like to improve, change, or remove from our daily lives–I know that I could.

Truthfully, that’s okay.

What’s not okay though, is choosing to make excuses or blame others for why those issues are in our lives in the first place.

Doing so is basically stating that those things and/or other people have power over the quality of our lives.

Simply put, we’re either giving our power away by making excuses, or we’re keeping our power by stating confidently that we are in full control of our lives.

One option is life-affirming. However, the other option will kill our lives and our dreams faster than we have ever imagined.

Accepting 100% responsibility for the awesomeness (or lack of it) in our lives is what true heroes do every single day. We may not be able to control the events in our lives, but we can always choose our response.

Just like Andy Dufresne said so brilliantly in the epic movie, The Shawshank Redemption, we can either, “Get busy living or get busy dying.”

As always, the choice is ours.

Luckily in this case, the choice is a very simple one.

Choose to live.

Your Turn

Which one of these life-stealing habits are you currently experiencing and committing to end today? Jump into the comments below and make your voice heard!

Book Cover_newMaking Work Work

Are you tired of dealing with the bullies and jerks at your job, and ready to join the new workplace positivity movement? That’s good, because change is coming, my friend. If you’re ready to join the movement to change how we treat each other at work, reserve your copy of Making Work Work, today! Order link on Amazon.com



Founder of The Positivity Solution
Author, keynote speaker, and kindness extremist who is committed to changing the world by helping as many people as possible to live and work with more positivity.

Latest posts by Shola (see all)


  1. Hi Shola,

    Great post. I’m currently dealing with some of the issues you write about. I have a toxic friend from high school that I cut out of my life years ago. I let him back in a few years ago, thinking that he’d changed, but he’s shown me lately he’s the same person I kicked out of my life. I’m having trouble cutting him off again because I feel bad for him-he has no other real friends besides me, but that’s because of his personality (he’s a raging narcissist.)

    #7 I’m working on that right now, too. 🙂

    • I’m glad you liked it, Wes! Your situation is exactly what Maya Angelou was talking about in her quote when she said “The first time someone shows you who they are, believe them.” I have cut out and then brought back more toxic people than I can even begin to mention here, and each time it was the worst decision ever. These days I’m strictly in “cut out” mode. As for your friend, this is going to sound a little harsh, but there’s a reason that you’re his only friend. Everyone else has decided that they don’t want his energy in their lives. Believe me Wes, your happiness and sanity are more important than being his only friend–especially if his friendship is hurting you in the process. Thanks for sharing and best of luck!

  2. Fear. Fear I can’t do it. Fear I’m not good enough, determined enough, tough enough, talented enough. That I’ll suck. That I’ll find out I really AM the laziest person in the world (I feel so lazy sometimes, but I suspect that’s the fear holding me back.) Or maybe that I’ll succeed and won’t be able to handle it. I hate how it paralyzes me.

    • I hear you, Juli. Fear is an absolutely devastating force for a reason. I used to have a paralyzing fear of public speaking that was off the charts. There was a book called “Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway” by Dr. Susan Jeffers and it changed my life (you should read it, it’s awesome). It helped me so much to understand that fear isn’t going anywhere (hell, I still feel it every time I speak in front of an audience), but now I feel the fear, and do it anyway. Believe me Juli, when you’re ready, you can do the exact same thing. Just feel it, and refuse to let it control you. Easier said than done, I know, but start today with a baby step and then go from there. I’m rooting for you, my friend.

  3. Hi Shola
    Thank you.
    We need to take control of our lives and make the choice to truly live.
    The past is history,the present is all we have. That’s why it is called a gift. Time cannot be replaced.

    • That’s right, Raj! The present truly is a gift–that’s why we need to make the most of it while we’re alive and able to do so. Thanks for reading!

  4. Gloria Araujo says:

    Taking care of me! I’ve suffered miserably for a few years with terrible arthritis in my back and buldging discs. Tried everything. I knew my weight didn’t help so I put on my big girl panties went to see a nutritionist, and signed up with a one on one trainer! I hadn’t been in a gym atmosphere for over 20 years! I’m 62 and truthfully I was scared to death. Today made my 3rd trip to the gym and eating healthy! No (D) word for me! 7 lbs lighter and I will not fail at this. My life as I want it to be, Depends on it! Thank you for this uplifting blog! You’re awesome !

    • Thats awesome, Gloria! It sounds like you’ve got point #7 mastered, my friend. What you’re doing is not easy, but I’m thrilled to hear that you’re pushing forward anyway, regardless of if it’s easy or not. That takes real courage and self-love. You are an inspiration, Gloria–keep up the great work!

  5. “Dreams are here for a reason”
    I’ve written that on my very cluttered fridge!
    It was an important reminder today.

  6. Fear. I have a diagnosed anxiety disorder, so fear is the biggie for me. And yet, I still keep people in my life that increase my anxiety through their toxicity or “well meaning” advice, I still procrastinate instead of doing things to make my life better today. I know I need to manage the other 6 things on this list or the anxiety isn’t manageable, and yet… ugh. Thanks for the kick in the backside, Shola. I needed it! 🙂

    • You’re so welcome, Maria–I’m always available for kick in the ass, when needed ;). Seriously though, having a diagnosed anxiety disorder definitely adds a layer of complexity to dealing with fear, that’s for sure. But you nailed it on the head–you do have the power to remove the people/drama in your life that adds to your anxiety instead of helps with it. Believe me, it’s not always easy (I’m working through the exact same things as I’m typing this response to you), but our best life is always worth our best fight. Best of luck Maria, you’ve got this!

      • I suffer from the same anxiety disorder as well as manic depression I do ALL 7 of these things and have been searching for a way to change my life I’ve done a few things as far as cutting off toxic people in my life and standing up for myself and what I believe in however I’m ashamed to admitt that after reading this today I’ve actually been using my depression and anxiety issues as more of an excuse than anything rather than just doing what I need to do to make myself happy I’m easily discouraged cause it seems as though every time I try to do things that better myself I get thrown back 10 steps to the 1 I actually made and get fed up and just settle but I don’t want to live like that anymore actually I CAN’T continue to live like this because I feel as if I’m on my death bed now (mentally and emotionally) and I can’t take it anymore I deserve better and I know I’m a good person and deserve better but I didn’t really know where to begin until I’ve read this post I truely am inspired by this post and it’s been extremely informative for me. I appreciate everything u do and believe u could change the world by ur positive inspiration. And will share everything I read from u that might be able to help others out I feel the whole world is suffering which is why we live in such a selfish cruel and greedy world and if more and more people just thought positively and took a min to think about others and what their actions may cause someone we would all live in a better world and b able to have more trust in people as well as it being easier to find true people who care about others as opposed to having just a few friends u actually trust and love and have their best interest at heart for them and them having ur best interest at heart and are actually happy for u when great things happen I’ve cut out all the negative influences out of my life with the exception of one who I’m still somehow in love with we dated 10 yrs and I can’t seem to let him go but I’m working on letting him not affect me in the way he does but that leaves me down to 2 girlfriends and 2 guy friends which are their spouses and it’s difficult at times when u think u really don’t have very many friends however it’s rewarding to know the 4 I have are true honest and loyal friends that only want me to b happy that I wouldn’t trade for anything I just wish that when I meet someone new it wasn’t a 60/40 chance they will wind up just using me or being around just when it benefits them I’d like to think it was the other way around but I’m very cautious with who I let in to my heart now. Anyways this was amazing and I think u are an amazing person and I’d like to thank you for this today and from here on out for helping me change my life and following my dreams if there is anyway I could help u spread the word more please let me know and I’d b honored to help, and just want the world to know u can change the cards u were dealt u don’t have to just fold when the cards u got weren’t good u can change it instead.

  7. another great one!

    the kids I work with are usually a combination of many of these… they listen to the naysayers, they live in fear (usually of success), they take no responsibility for their own actions, and they keep all sorts of toxic people in their lives…. or they ARE the toxic people.

    it breaks my heart because they are so young. I try to be an example to them of positivity, but as long as they stay in their bad situations, it is not usually successful.

    keep up the awesome message, Shola.. there are soooo many who still need to hear it!


    • Hey Kathy! You’re right, it is heartbreaking to see young people fall victim to the 7 silent killers in this post. This post was actually one of my easiest to write because I was the victim of all 7 killers when I was younger (actually, some very recently), and I didn’t have a mentor like you to help me through it. I know that I’ve told you this many times, but you’re doing great work, and there’s no doubt that the kids you’re helping will be deeply impacted by the positivity that you bring on a daily basis. Keep it up, mama–the world needs you!

      • Seattle- E says:

        you know I’m suffering from this – right now from all 7 pointers. but as I realize that going through all the 7 pointers I still try to be good and I still try to push myself even though just like that other person said that like they fall back I do the same I called back 10 steps or more and I feel super miserable and I regret it and I keep up with the same old habit of trying and trying and trying and I realized this year I’m actually different inside I’m actually mean to people I actually respond with an attitude of not taking criticism or feedback easily anymore like I used to. So I asked myself who am I there’s there’s something wrong with me but I’m also a smart person that believes in myself enough to have confidence that to know and take responsibility that but me. easier said than done but I always procrastinate and I feel like a failure and I do love it which I don’t like to is that I’m lonely, I don’t know what it’s like to live with someone or have a companionship with someone or to be loved by the opposite sex. But I do believe that we are human and these mistakes will always happen because nobody is perfect and I feel that it’s just part of our human life. But it’s so nice to read that there’s someone that thinks just like me and feels the same way that I’m not the only one in the world which I’ve always known that. but it’s hard to know that when you’re feeling depressed. I have to admit Seattle Washington can be very depressing to live in because of this weather the energies to get passed on but it’s all up to me to take it positive or negative just so freaking hard I’m crying right now because I’m not dead yet and I feel like I’m dying inside little by little if I don’t change my habits because I feel or else I will die completely but I do know that when I actually push myself to accomplish something even if I don’t accomplish all fully it feels so good and I feel great. But I now know the secret, it’s now or never. Because nothing can be rewind and I see how time has passed by I get it now so hard to get that when you’re young. Why that is I don’t know gosh I wish I knew these things earlier in life to fully understand. But I know the secret now I really do, I’ve known it all along I just keep putting it off because of fear and that one is a killer. Now I don’t call these comments complaining I call them being human because we do have to let him out so others can know because I do believe the positive in life is to be reminded and especially when we’re dying inside and it makes us Dumber that’s where forgetfulness comes from and you can take that in many ways.. But I’m pretty sure you understand what I mean we just tend to forget because we’re not perfect and it’s so great to be reminded I’m being reminded puts motivation and me being reminded as reading comments for this blog about these pointers that kill us. So it’s not complaining we could take it that way butt in a positive way. I just pray that I can be strong this is seriously hard. But there is something in me that just keeps going for the good parts meaning when I fall I still get back up even if I don’t succeed even if I go back 10 steps I still keep going forward and making these mistakes and I do learn from them just not very easily depending what they are like for an example toxic people especially those that you try to help and they bring me down. Well no excuses I made that mistake recently to help someone and they brought me down and that was family but I now know to not go through that ever again and I know the signs of those toxic people. well that was a long response I feel that I’m a great person I just have a lot of serious work to go through because I know that I have become a different person this year and a little bit more meaner with an attitude like a grumpy old woman and I want to work on that because I feel that that is not the real me. And I feel like when I’m grumpy I tend to be like this pathological liar to get attention because I use the excuse that I am lonely which it is true that I am lonely but I should not be lying to people which I have never done before until this year but I’m not lying to them that will affect their lives online more to myself that’s hurting my own life for an example let’s just say I was feeling grumpy one day at work because of the night before I was feeling lonely for being as old as I am and single and not having a family or ever been married and I was just feeling so lonely and terrible and also I’m a big girl and I also felt unhealthy because I have always tried to lose weight but I never do even though I’m pretty active in a way I saw it what is wrong with me why can’t I just finish and succeed well the thing is I went to work the next day all grumpy with those feelings my coworker told me something that I just didn’t want to hear and I took the feedback so badly that I was responding like a butthead. And let’s just say that no matter how smart I am that I wanted to just tell them just sorry and move on and take responsibility for my actions which I did I told him instead that I had cancer and I was dying and that I wasn’t going to live long. Well the truth of it is is that I never spoken to a doctor because I don’t really care too much for doctors unless it was a life-threatening situation. But technically I was dying inside because I knew that I’ve been a different person this whole year and the way that I acted towards people and my coworkers so I apologize and I told them that I was acting that way because I’m going to die one day from cancer. Now I felt like poo poo major poo poo. I was questioning myself like why did I say that what is wrong with me that was the worst excuse. Plus not only that since I felt like crap I was crying from lying and the depression inside me. And I just didn’t know how to let it out or just tell them forgive me I’m having a bad day I was so mad at myself for being a liar. Well it’s done and over with and life moves on so a promise I made to myself is not to ever do that again not even to get attention ever. so thank you for the blog and the pointers my goal is to try again and keep trying until I succeed because I know myself that no matter what I want I always tend to succeed sooner or later, so thank you. and have a good day to all of you out there that need this help.

  8. [ Smiles ] I LOVE your pointers!

  9. Hi Shola. Good article. Very well-written and it is filled with wisdom. I was wondering if you could write a post about the experience you had with the person on their death bed? That sounds interesting and intriguing.

  10. Welcome back Shola, and I hope your vacation was restful. This is a great post to read and re-read. It is hard for me to read it. I was raised by people who did all that to me: they were toxic, they squelched me and my dreams, and I lived in fear of them. They were child abusers and I had no choice but to cling to hope of a future happy life. I only go into all this to confirm for readers that these habits really do eat away your lifeblood and your soul. I urge readers to consider that when these things are done to a child, they are abuse. So if any of us are out there doing this to ourselves, that is self-abuse. Maybe if readers understand these damaging traits to be actual abuse, they can better comprehend your post emphasizing the damage that follows.

    • Glenn Hadden says:

      Me to I was sexually and verbally hit all but its so hard to think I can forget and smile more I die emotionally everyday any advice I’ve been on xanax 16years but I can’t figure out how to live

  11. Value Time: this has always been an issue for me, but especially now that I have a child and the daily routine + working from home easily take up all my time. I must learn to put in time to my dreams, too, because I feel the effects of not honoring them ripple through my life and relationships.

  12. This is one of the best posts I’ve ever read online. Every subject in here was (and is) the story of my life…and probably everyone else at one time or another. Thanks.

  13. That is the most insane thing, as I was growing up I was taught all of these things now I know why they ban drugs and stuff. It only destroys the spirit in you, so when you die, it does too.

  14. I can relate to the toxic friends thing, I have one in my life that I’m still deciding what to do with. Part of me feels like I should cut her out part of me wants to try and help her, I don’t want to be another person to walk out on her, but is it a lost cause if it’s affecting me too?

  15. Great post. I have given control of my life to another person. Today I am taken that control back and placing it back into my own hands. I am capable of handling me.

  16. I love this post. Going through a real period of transformation right now at the age of twenty, after years of taking in my families negative attitudes, blaming others, and not taking responsibility for myself. How in the dark you can be. Have been on a steady uphill climb for about a year or more thanks to therapy and posts like this remind me that though living your life in misery may have been taught to you by your family, there sure are people not indulging in that nonsense out there. Peace and love xo

  17. I have read some of your posts and the law of the attraction. Truly, I found your blog by accident, but in a way is meant to be here because I started to asking me “how are you doing, realy? and so far I decide to anwser this with: “I am exceptional”.

  18. Yes… it’s exactly so!

    “Your dreams are here for a reason. They are your life blood. They don’t belong to your spouse, your parents, your kids, your friends, your pastor, or your coworkers—they belong to you.”

  19. Shola
    Your post on fear really speaks to me. Years ago my wife and I dreamed of living in the Rocky Mountains. We were young and just starting life together in Texas. We really wanted to live life in the mountains. After much searching I finally got a job interview in Wyoming. After the interview I started stressing about actually pulling the trigger and making the move. After all, I had a good job and a house and friends in Texas. I became fearfull about the possibility of making a mistake by moving. By the time I got the job offer I had decided to play it safe and turn it down.
    I let fear win. I did not follow my dreams. I was afraid to take a chance. Now it is 20 years later and I still deeply regret letting fear win.
    The good news is that That dream of mountains did not die. It would not be silenced. A year ago we purchased a home in Montana. We are in the process of selling our house in Texas. We are moving to Montana this summer. I am still very fearful, but this time fear will not win. I will not let it.

    Thanks for your good work.

  20. This is amazing, thank you.

  21. Kalissha Knighton says:

    After finding and reading this same content over and over to where I can anticipate exactly what any article on it will say I still have not been able to move my feet and actually exact change from doing these things. I guess I need someone to hold my hand right now and literally walk with me through my struggles because I’m just stuck on my own.

  22. Mandie Taylor says:

    Please tell me you have written a book?! I stumbled across this asking Google why I keep dreaming that people are trying to kill me. I have never come across anything like this. So real, so close to home. You seem to know exactly what I need to deal with. I am 40 years old and I love people and want to help BUT I need to deal with my mess of a life first…I realize this. Please tell me you have written a book.

  23. Chiangi Kuan says:

    Thanks Shola for the life-changing post. I could recall you said in one of the posts that ‘easier said than done.’ This is true. I have the problem of procrastination. Each I want to do something, I keep saying ‘I shall do, I shall do,’ until sometimes I end up not doing it. But I trust God I’ll handle it after here by action and not merely by words. Thank you Shola.

  24. Epic Journey says:

    I love this post. I have read it several times in the last few days and shared it on Facebook in my group! You have gained a new raving fan!

  25. Good stuff bro!!! Walking in purpose is written all over this article.

  26. I am in a battle with EVERY one of those. I am aware of it also. I just dont have the strength to do what I know I need to do. I am paralyzed, watching my life leak away. It causes me so much pain because I simply cannot do anything about any of it. My body and mind will not cooperate.

  27. Michael Langlois says:

    I ran across your blog while searching for an answer to why I am always being blind sided by parylzing fer that I have died and am living in a mirror image world where everything is the same except everyone in your life is out to get you in some form or fashion. That’s what happened to me 7 years ago after getting hurt at work and losing my 29 year career because of a corrupt workers comp system. The fallout of years of uncontrolled pain and fighting a faceless bureaucratic State Department of Insurance literally scared me into a nervous breakdown when I was put right in the middle of a fight for my life against something I didn’t even believe existed. The whole state government in the state where I live is corrupt. It is all about doing what is best for business and making the atmosphere look appealing to other businesses to come here to set up their companies. And as far as the working man, well they are expendable. That’s the part that completely turned my world upside down. No matter how right I was I was treated like I did something wrong, no matter how much proof and evidence I showed that this was going on the more it was swept under the rug like it didn’t exist. I would have better luck telling everyone “.I was abducted by Aliens last night”. It is that surreal and unbeivable that the world we live in is so full of corruption, deception, and the realization that you as the working man don’t matter in the eyes of big business.
    I had to give up my fight after becoming extremely mentally ill from being in the system. 4 years later when I gave up I had lost my home, my career, my marriage, my financial future, my family, and moved away to the country and bought a 1 acre piece of undeveloped land and was literally homeless and alone. Other my angel, a 4 lb. Chihuahua who is my angel sent from heaven to watch over me I have been alone building a home for 2 and half years.
    But I digress, it seemed that everyone in my life turned toxic. Lies, secrets, especially my own family who I looked to for support all couldn’t get far enough away from me. Ive never been so scared in my life. My biggecst fear in life is being alone and Ive been living that nightmare for almost 3 years and it hasn’t gotten any easier. If it were not for building this house I am pretty sure I would have institutionalized years ago. But I keep fighting looking for answers as to how to put my life back together and how to deal with the loss of everything that I used to call my life.
    “When Nothing Feels Real: Derealization, Depersonalization, and Anxiety”
    (These are phenomena called depersonalization and derealization, and you may be surprised to learn that it’s actually quite common in psychological disorders such as anxiety and depression.)

  28. This was really amazing, Shola. I have a toxic father who abused my mother physically and emotionally when I was young. After that, when we moved here, my parents were separated for a year. And that was hell. I lived with my mom and things got so bad that last summer, my mom called my dad to live with us. Things are way better now, but what if the one person you need that is supposed to inspire you, to take care of you, who is supposed to support you is the very toxic person you need to cut from your life? Believe me, my father is a great dad. He loves me and helps with homework and is there when I need him, but at the same time, he isn’t. He’s not a great husband. He sits around all day while my mom works and provides for all 3 of us. He’s never really interested in anything because of his fear. In family situations or in front of others, he never supports my mom and backs off like a coward when he’s supposed to stand up for us. He’s not the leader of the family. And yet, somehow, without him to do the dishes and help with the dinner or drop me off at tennis practice, things are much worse. What do I do?

  29. Hi Shola,

    Thanks for the wonderful post. Im working on #1. I used to put a lot and lot of sugarcoats, but now i understand, the very first time people show us how they are, we should believe them.


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