I'm not afraid of death anymore. I believe a lot of the struggles we have in life comes from a deep fear of death.
This can take form in many ways. For example, we want to write the great American novel, or we want to achieve something because we love building things.
Perhaps, we want to build a great piece of technology, start an amazing business, or we want to be an advocate and make a difference. Most of that comes from this fear that we're going to die, so we have to build something that will last beyond us.
Obviously, there is also the obsession that parents have with their children. A lot of that is warranted by biological love, but also some of that is the quest for immortality.
Even some of the outlandish beliefs such as organized religion fall into that. Personally, I don't have that quest for immortality. Actually, I never have because I came to this fundamental conclusion that the universe has been around for a long time.
The universe is a very large place. If you study even the smallest bit of science you realize that for all practical purposes, we are nothing but a single bacteria to the universe. Your existence and my existence are minuscule like a firefly blinking once in the night. So we're not really here very long, and we don't really matter that much, and nothing that we do last.
Eventually, you will fade. Your work will fade. Your children will fade. Your thoughts will fade. This planet will fade. The sun will fade. It'll all be gone. The entire civilization that we just remembered now - like the Mayans or Sumerians; Do you know any Mayans or Sumerians? Do you hold any of them in high regard or esteem? Have they outlived their natural lifespan somehow? No! So we are here for an extremely short period of time.
Now, from here you can choose to believe in an afterlife or not. And if you believe in an afterlife, then that should give you comfort and make you realize that maybe whatever goes on in this life is not that consequential.
On the contrary, if you don't believe in the afterlife then you can also come to a similar conclusion in which you realize this is such a short and precious life. That it is really important you don't spend it being unhappy.
There is no excuse spending your life in misery. You've only got about seventy to eighty years out of the fifty billion or however many years the universe is going to be around. And whatever you're natural state is, it's probably not this. This is your living state. Your dead state is true over a much longer time frame. So when I think about the world that way, I realized life is just a game. Which is not to say that you go to a dark side and start acting unethically and immorally.
Quite the contrary, you realize just how precious life is, and how it's important to make sure that you enjoy yourself. You sleep well at night. You're a person with good moral standard. You're generally happy. You care about other people. But you can't take it seriously. You can't get too hung-up over it. You can't make yourself miserable and unhappy over it. You just have a very short period of time on this earth.
Nothing you do is going to matter that much over the long run. Don't take yourself too seriously. And that just makes everything else work.