Oscar Wilde once said, “To live is the rarest thing in the world.  Most people exist, that is all.”

It’s a sad, perhaps cynical comment, but it’s also truer than we would like.

I’m not sure that I’m wise enough to be able to completely define the difference between living and existing, but let’s try:

Living is being able to find joy and humour in your surroundings, existing is going through the day with barely a smile.

Living is working with passion and enthusiasm, existing is turning up everyday and collecting a paycheck.

Living is having clear, meaningful goals to work towards, existing is wandering aimlessly through life.

Living is investing in others, helping to develop them to their full potential, existing is being self-absorbed and suspicious of others’ motives.

Living is leaving yourself vulnerable to love, with all of its highs and lows, existing is putting a wall around your heart that no-one can break through.

Living is understanding that we only get one shot at life, so we had better make the most of it, existing procrastinates, hesitates and squanders the opportunity to make a difference.

Personally, I believe in life after death, but I also believe in life before death!

So, do you live or exist?

Do you have any other examples of living versus existing that you would like to add to our list?

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