Twice, I have been asked to face my own death and write my own eulogy. My priorities have changed dramatically, so I will attempt to do it again. What I learned from the process is how to define and articulate what matters most in life. Working backwards from writing your own eulogy, one can realize where they are now in life, and then create and implement a plan to achieve their dreams. Start with the end in mind. Create a clear picture of what “done” looks like, and work backward from there to establish the individual objectives and actions that will get you there.
CHARLES KOCHEL 1974 – 2069
“Be Present. Live every day like it was your last. Listen carefully. See the light in others. Be empathetic.” These are words often read or heard coming from Charles. He was a father and a husband first, fiercely loyal to his friends and as an advisor he helped improve the quality of life for scores of people. He prioritized spirituality, relationships, health and money – always aware of his ego and working on “the man in the mirror” creating balance in his own life.
An avid outdoorsman and lover of nature, often he could be found (or not found) Fly-fishing, paddling and hiking, sometimes in the most remote terrain in the world. He was writer publishing 3 novellas and many poems, short stories and white papers. He was an activist for women empowerment. He and his family lived a life of simplicity .
The story of the “”Mexican Fisherman”” had great impact on his life. He would often say his mentors included Jesus, The Dalai Lama, Muhammad, Gandhi, Mother Teresa, Teddy Roosevelt, John Muir and Aldo Leopold, each legacies, larger than life.
What Charles would tell us now, is to celebrate life, as he chose to do everyday. He loved peace, did not understand war and could find the good in most everyone and everything. He was a gentle soul that cared more about others than he did about himself. He lived within his means, constantly downsizing material items, allowing his children to be educated in some of the finest institutions in the world.
An entrepreneur, advisor, friend, husband and father, Charles was this to many, but much, much more to others. Giving up on no one and caring deeply about helping people achieve what they want in life, Charles is an inspiration to each of us, he made the world a better place.
The last white paper I read from Charles ended with this reminder: Never mind my name. Forget my face. But, remember this – it’s not difficult to love those who care about you most, listen and be present for others and understand the first step to knowing everything is to realize, you know nothing at all.
So, here is to you, Charles ~cheers & prost~ to a life well lived.