To be or not to be? You MUST decide during this crisis!

Kij Johnson climbing a large rock.

During times of crisis, we are faced with many decisions. None may be more important than to truly, deeply, decide to go on. To live! The word “decide”comes from the Latin root for “from” (de-) and to “cut” (-cīdere). Deciding to live means cutting off any other possibility. It is a solid YES.

Shakespeare may have summed up the challenge of human existence in his play of Hamlet. The character is faced with the ultimate question each of us faces, “To be or not to be?” To live, fully, or not to live. This financial “crisis” is quietly bringing on this question for much of the world. It is what is in our unconscious mind that drives us. These hidden questions drive us.

Animals don’t seem to have a problem. They don’t have a choice, they just survive. Put a rat in a maze, it will find the cheese. Each time, it gets faster. Move the cheese and the rat will pause for a bit, but go right after finding new cheese in the new location. Millions of people have had their “cheese” moved. You know, the easy money they thought would be there forever. But unlike a rat, we have a mind and it contemplates giving up. We actually contemplate living or not living, rather than looking for new cheese.

In watching many greats like Tony Robbins, Michael Jordan, and Lance Armstrong, were usually faced with the question, “To be or not to be?” Robbins was deep in debt and hiding from creditors. Jordan didn’t make the tryouts for his high school basketball team. Armstrong faces the ultimate test of this question, death from cancer as well as never having children. Each time, it is the moment they decided to live, to BE, rather than die is what have them be in our lives now.

Have you ever faces a loss, or some challenge, where you didn’t fully decide to live? Maybe you just kept going on because you needed to, not because you really decided to live. Are you still living that way now, halfway between a reluctant sense of going on? Or, has this recent “crisis” brought you to a place you have not fully decided to go get some new cheese and fully live?

Decide to live today! Decide that you are going to live and make the most of it!

Here’s a story of a climber that faced this moment of decision. It’s an example to us all of “deciding to be, there is no question.”


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