… is generally terrible advice.
The full quote, by the late Steve Jobs, goes like this:
If you live each day as if it was your last, some day you’ll most certainly be right.
What he meant by that is the fact that you should try and do important things as often as possible, since you never know what tomorrow might bring. Yet most people interpret this as an excuse not to prepare, not to have foresight and of course, not plan ahead and embrace “come what may”.
And this reminds me of what I’ve managed to build over the past 25 years—a company that fuels the growth of so many people and businesses all around the world. And I look back with pride on what we’ve managed to accomplish in the travel industry, in hospitality and insurance; most of all though, I’m excited about the results of our R&D in AI and other bleeding-edge tech.
Which brings me back to the original premise of this article: If companies, such as individuals, would live each day as if it were their last, where on Earth would we be today? Probably in a chaos of not-so-disruptive as much as destructive technologies, untested and unproven.
Provided, a little degree of insanity is necessary in order to get ahead and every founder will tell you that at one point or another she or he almost went insane because of their business.
To go even further—and touching on the subject of AI again—what would happen to individuals and companies dealing with AI that were living every day as if it were their last? More importantly, what would happen to all of us?
As you probably are aware, openAI (funded by a plethora of smart and powerful people, including Elon Musk) is on a path of “discovering and enacting the path to safe artificial general intelligence”. Yet this is only one organization and it’s quite well-known that nation-states have their own AI programs and of course, agendas.
What would come of all these parties developing their own all-knowing AIs, only time will tell. What we do now, and I try to emphasize this as much as possible, is that in those times if we live each day as it were the last, it most certainly will.
So next time someone gives you that advice, correct them and tell them: You’d be much better off doing something important, positive and worthwhile today.