Love, Time, Death

(~2 minute read)

coll beauty

I recently watched Collateral Beauty and was deeply moved by its messages of love, time and death.  The premise of this movie is that we are here to connect and that every human on this earth is connected by these 3 things; we all:

  1. Long for love
  2. Wish we had more time
  3. Fear death

Death assumes that Howard (played by Will Smith) is “charmed, I’m sure” to meet her … he’s not.  Time describes himself as “a gift.” And love advises “don’t try to live without (me)” as she “is the reason for everything.” 

As I reflect on these messages, I consider how I use this gift that is time, how I live with love and how I have dealt with the deaths of family and friends.  For me, I realise that:

  • At times it is difficult to maintain balance when there are competing personal and workplace demands on my time. Unfortunately, workplace demands often seem to take priority; I need to manage client expectations better.
  • As love is one of my VIA Signature Strengths, I seek out people to connect with and to care for. But there is also a tipping point where this strength has become my Achilles heel and it gets in the way.
  • I hold on to dear memories of those who have died and find myself fondly reminiscing about shared experiences, and the joy and learning that those people have brought into my life. For me, reminiscing doesn’t make it any less sad, but it is a tool that has contributed to my growth and resilience.

I realise that of these 3 things, it takes the most courage for me to accept feedback that my strength of love, at times, does become my Achilles heel.  In these instances, my courage to listen and hear this feedback enables me to increase my self-awareness and to be my best self.

Madeline (played by Naomie Harris) tells Howard that this “profound connection to everything (is there), you just need to look for it.”  I encourage you to be courageous and “look for it” as the benefits – the collateral beauty – may well outweigh the risks.


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