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, written by Jeremy. Read the commentary.

The future unfolds. Chimeric. Feathered tendrils spill forward and spiral in time.

Success gleams; a moment from now. We caress it, briefly, and pass it on–to our children, to the future. The product of years of striving, mountains of promises, and great swaths of black, unseen time.

It will be a gift. A sacrifice. Our atonement.

We are desperate, and vain, to create next. We give everything to it. All we are is poured, deliberately and completely, into some time ahead of us. What of now?

What if I stop? What if I trade the future for now? Instead of letting “next” be my banker; why not this moment (with no middleman)?

What would change if my children never knew of the future I’d influence, impact and change? What if all they ever knew was a love of moments, the pursuit of presence, and a steward of now?

How different would their lives be? How differently would they see the world? What would they learn to influence, impact and change? Even more, what would they learn to cherish, consider and celebrate?

Commentary

Jeremy,love this post. The other thought I had was ..yesterday. What if yesterday was my success? I think our challenge as humans is now. Not next or yesterday…great writing and thoughts my friend.

And what if our children valued our impact differently than we do? How do we give to a future world that may not care, or may have moved on to other concerns, or may not understand how hard we struggled to achieve what seems so simple in their context?

To Alan: Thank you. I agree, yesterday can have as much gravity as tomorrow. You will have an interesting view on this. In your work, coaching executives, how have you seen these two parts of time press on your clients view of the present?

To Taylor: There’s two bits in your comment. One of weight and another of kind. But, for starters, you’ve set this in the future, again. Let’s touch that then move on to your distinctions.

I was thinking: I cannot give–cannot know to give–my children their future. It’s theirs and not mine. But if I, in some vain hope, strive to give them one, I sacrifice both my time and their time with me.

Might it be better to cherish now–share myself in this moment–instead of pouring everything into some unseen future? Might I do more to give them next by being with them now? Let them use my hands today instead of giving them some product tomorrow?

Back to weight: How might it be weighed differently? What of us, today, is worth counting in their weight tomorrow? That’s not an empty question. I mean it sincerely. What counts?

And to kinds: The complexity of our best problems and the riddles that capture us now move through a spectrum. If we are truly impacting this complexity, it will be of another kind when handed to our children. Is it’s cost important? Is there anything more important? Of those most important things, what are we able to give today that we may not be able to give tomorrow?

Jeremy,
You’ve taken the path of, straight from the heart, straight to the heart. I have recently taken the task of embracing the reality of now, versus the concept of tomorrow. In particular, the idea of pouring time and energy into tomorrow, or future.

As you’ve pointed out, tomorrow does not exist, it is illusory and cannot hold shape until it becomes, now. Therefore, every ounce of myself that I pour into future, at the expense of now, flows of its own accord and I lose control of its impact.

Only when I pour myself into the moment can I optimize my impact. Since the future is malleable, the weight of my actions in the moment is only known when the future becomes the moment. It is one of the paradoxes of the human condition that makes the effort of thought worth pursuing.