The future is fantasy. It is make-believe and fiction. It is a figment of our imagination. The most important thing to understand about the future is that it never comes. Therefore, my question to you this week is, why do you spend so much time thinking about it, worrying about it, and trying to predict it, when it does not exist? There is only one moment in time that is real and, in your control, and that is this very moment.

In his quote from well over 2000 years ago, Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu stated that:

If you are depressed, you are living in the past.
If you are anxious, you are living in the future.
If you are at peace, you are living in the present.

In the second sentence he states that if you are anxious, you are living in the future. Why is that? Simple, we cannot predict our future, it is an unknown for every person, and spending any time trying to work out what will happen in the world, in your country, and in your life is a futile exercise. Anxiety is what happens when we focus on what we don’t know and cannot control.

You may be asking, what about tomorrow? That is the future, right? Yes, it is, however, it doesn’t exist until it turns into today, and then it is no longer the future, but, like right now, the only time you will ever have. In one of the greatest movies ever, Rocky 3, Rocky is struggling mentally and emotionally. His coach, Apollo Creed, is sparring with him and Rocky is not responding. Apollo yells, Damn it Rock. Come on. What’s the matter wit you? Rocky, in a dejected tone responds with, tomorrow, I’ll be better tomorrow. Apollo yells at him, There is no tomorrow! There is no tomorrow! There is no tomorrow!

Apollo knows it, I know it, and I am sure you know it. There is no future, there is only today. I am not saying you don’t need to think about things you are aspiring to have, do, or become in your life. I am not suggesting you don’t create a strong vision for what you want and set goals to move towards its realisation. I am saying, once the vision is clear and the goal is set, focus on the only time you have, and that is now. That is this very day.

I can tell you, I have spent too many years of my life dealing with anxiety. Always wondering and worried about how my life will turn out. Wondering whether I will make the team, be liked, be good enough, make enough money, be loveable, fulfil my potential, and be happy in my life. I spent so much time in the fantasy of the future I forgot to take control of the only time that would determine the path my life would take. Today! Are you relating to what I am saying? Are you fixated on what may happen in this crazy world in the future? Are you worried about whether you will have the life you want? While you focus on these things, you are missing your life as it is happening, right now.

The power you have, right now, to make decisions and take action, will, in this instant, change the course your life is heading. Is that what you want or are you happy with the life that is unfolding for you right now? If so, great, nothing needs to change. If, however, you are living with uncertainty and anxiety, and are sick of it, then think about what you can do now to start the process of change. If you read this and think, I will start tomorrow, I want you to imagine Apollo Creed yelling at you, There is no tomorrow! There is no tomorrow! There is no tomorrow!

If your health is suffering, start today. If you need money, begin now. If your relationship needs attention, get into action in this moment. If your career is ailing, your business is stagnating, your book is stuck, you joy is on hold, then start now to take your life in the direction you want it. It is up to you. No-one else is responsible or at fault. Everything you will experience in your life moving forward, depends on what you do today, whether you feel like or not.

In my podcast this week called, From pain to purpose, I speak with Keagen Hadley. Keagen went through incredible physical and emotional pain as an athlete and was stuck in life waiting for his future to just improve, until he realised nothing would happen unless he took immediate action. The result is a man who is ‘supremely passionate’ (his words) about what he is doing to positively impact lives.

Can I suggest you eliminate the word ‘future’ from your vocabulary? Why? Because the more you focus on it, the more you will stay stuck in the place you are in. The future is not real. It will never happen as it is imaginary and mythical. The only thing that is real is you and the only time you have any control over is now. Please don’t file this blog away as an interesting read. Please take notice and do something you need to do, NOW! I just want you to know, deep in your heart, there is no future, only today.