There is nothing quite like a near-death experience to help you appreciate your life.
I’ve personally had a few near-death experiences, although they were given the title of ‘attempted suicide’ since I brought them on myself.
This post is not intended to glorify suicide. Instead, my aim is to demonstrate how it liberated me.
When you have been beaten so far to the ground that all you think about is taking your own life, you have nothing left to lose.
This is a powerful position that you can play to your advantage to help yourself climb out of a dark hole, and essentially, re-design your whole life from scratch.
My suicide (mini-)story
Back in 2011, I stood near a railway line watching the London to Edinburgh train go past at 200mph at around 11:30pm.
I was admiring its sleek speed; the way it guides along the tracks and disappears into the darkness.
I wasn’t there to recreationally train spot. I was considering my fourth suicide attempt.
Needless to say, my first three attempts were complete failures, and I never did make a fourth attempt. After watching that train go flying past, I turned around and walked away.
People always use to ask me why; why did I want to take my own life?
The truth is, I never wanted to die. I just wanted to escape the life that I had.
When the world put too much on my shoulders, I wanted to do nothing else except hide in my bedroom under the duvet.
I use to love that magical space between awake and asleep. In that space, I could control my dreams. I could be who I wanted to be, and live how I wanted to live, all without the world beating me down and stealing my smile and energy.
“I’d rather die”
In my early 20’s when I was thinking up ways to kills myself, I unknowingly gave myself the strongest superpower that I know of.
You see, in those moments of weakness and despair, of wanting to escape, I would have, quite literally, rather died. And I tried to…three times!
There is nothing more conclusive or final than death. And in a strange and twisted way, this liberated me.
I dreamt up a lifestyle that would be crazy impossible for most people. So crazy, in fact, that they wouldn’t even try to attempt it or try to achieve it.
I wanted to be an entrepreneur. I wanted to live life on my terms, I didn’t want to have to answer to anyone. I wanted a six-figure income that rolled into my bank account almost automatically. I didn’t want to face rush hour traffic every day, I didn’t want the 9-5 Monday-Friday grind. I wanted to be free.
I wanted to be free so much, that I would have literally rather died if I couldn’t achieve it.
When the stakes are that high, there is no settling. There is no middle ground. You’re ALL IN.
Either I was going to have the life that I dreamed of, or I was going to have no life at all.
The words, ‘I’d rather die’, became my life motto.
Crazy or clever?
You probably think that choosing to die as an alternative, or indeed attempting to kill myself, is crazy. And I’ll have to agree with you, it’s pretty messed up.
But, aren’t we all going to die at some point?
The only difference is that I brought the deadline closer and faced my own mortality, and in a twisted way, it motivated it and gave me the strength I needed to continue living.
If you knew that you were going to die in the next few months or in the next year, I bet you would be spending your time much differently than what you are currently. You’d do things, say things, experience things, that you would have never dared to before.
Death has a brilliant way of putting everything into perspective and sorting out the wheat from the chaff.
We spend a ridiculous amount of our time on trivial problems and gossip. The energy that we pour into situations that will have no beneficial outcome is astonishing. Most days, we create zero or very little value and/or happiness in our lives. Instead, we just exist.
What’s the point of this post?
The point is that none of us are getting out of here alive.
The way I see it is you’ve got three options:
- Put your head in the sand and meander through life like a herded sheep.
- Walk your own path but stay safely in between the lines of mediocrity.
- Swing the bat and aim to knock it out of the park!
I’d rather die than exist in options 1 or 2.
For my own sanity, I need to be able to swing the bat in option 3. Even if I keep missing. Even if I keep falling flat on my face. As long as I have the option of getting back up and swinging again, then I’m ok. I only have to hit it out of the park ONCE.
So, the great thing about my suicide (if the words ‘great’ and ‘suicide’ can co-exist in the same sentence) is that nothing is ever as final as death, which is how it helped liberated me to start swinging. After all, what have I got to lose? Nothing is more important than life.
P.S. Writing this post is cheaper than therapy! 😅 (I joke!)
P.P.S. Seriously though, I’m totally fine. I’ve been cleared by a psychiatrist. 👍🏼
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