One life is enough for me.

By crispinheneise / On / In Engineering Daybook

When asked if he believed in immortality, Albert Einstein once said “no, and one life is enough for me”.

Life can be hard. Tiresome even. But I don’t think I’ve ever found myself echoing Einstein’s sentiment here. In fact quite the opposite: I’ve often lamented that there’s only one life to live.

Life’s limitations force us to make hard choices. We can’t do everything; we can’t be every version of ourselves. I’d love to be a doctor, a police officer, a farmer, a carpenter.

Our greatest power is that of choice. If we are privileged enough to live in a free and prosperous society, we can choose to be and do just about anything. I’ve chosen to be a father and an entrepreneur.

Those choices also come with limitations. The only way to fully choose to do one thing is to willingly say “no” to another. In that way our limitations may shape who we are as much (or maybe more so) than our capabilities.

Oh, we can still dabble at things that interest us. My choice to be an entrepreneur has meant that I choose not to be a farmer. But I can still dabble at farming on our little family homestead. Do I still wish I could have a chance to live those other lives? You bet I do. The world is full of so much interest and wonder that I think you could live a thousand lives and still find glory in new life.

Also published on Medium.

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