I was deeply saddened by the loss of Dan Wheldon yesterday. Dan was a two time Indy 500 winner and talented Indy Car driver. He was involved in a horrific crash at the Las Vegas Speedway and died shortly after.
Whether or not you like or watch auto racing, you can empathize with the pain his wife, two small sons and friends are going through today. These terrible tragedies should remind us of the value of life and its brevity. Like Steve Jobs famously remarked, knowing you are going to die is a powerful motivator for doing great things with you life.
I often hear well meaning people say that someone (like Dan Wheldon) died doing what he loved. Certainly Dan knew the risks and accepted them. And by all accounts, he loved racing very much.
The bigger point, to me, is to live doing what you love. How often do we defer joy? How often do we mistakenly think that circumstances or monotony can really prevent us from loving what we’re doing?
We choose moment to moment whether to love our work, our circumstances and our lives. It is a choice that too frequently falls off our conscious radar. The loss of a human life is a terrible thing, but in pausing to reflect, we can at least extract some good.
RIP Dan Wheldon. I didn’t know you but was and am inspired by your example, and the excellence you brought to your work.
And may we all spend today and as much of every day we can living what we love.