A sad day
On Friday 9th April, HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, died peacefully at Windsor Castle, a couple of months short of reaching his 100th birthday. For so many of us, his strong, supportive partnership with the Queen had existed throughout our lives. They had been married for 73 years. A real love story.
His death is a great loss to his family, friends and to the nation; but to have lived to 99 and enjoyed a life devoted to public service (including in the Royal Navy in the Second World War) is something to celebrate. Prince Philip achieved a huge amount for a range of charities, supporting more than 800 organisations, and, most importantly, created the Duke of Edinburgh Awards in 1956. Now in 130+ countries, the awards have transformed so many lives, empowering and equipping millions of young people from all backgrounds to develop skills, confidence and resilience – my children included. (I was lucky enough to meet him some years ago).
Purpose and Giving to Others
Two of the eight steps in my book ‘How to Age Joyfully’ are:
😀 to have a purpose and
😀 to give to others,
HRH Prince Philip exemplified both.
The Leo Tolstoy quote neatly encompasses these two steps. And research has shown that having ‘a reason for being’ and helping others are important for health and well being, and enable us to live a happier, more fulfilled and even a longer life. Prince Philip was such an excellent role model.
At this sad time, it is perhaps timely to highlight these two ways we can help ourselves make the most of our lives.
Another favourite quote of mine is from the 26th US President, Theodore Roosevelt, (1858 – 1919):
It’s never too late
Prince Philip only retired from public life at 96. So, it’s never too late to do ‘what you can’, however small or large, for someone less fortunate than you. During this pandemic many have done exactly that. Let’s hope it continues once we return to our ‘new normal’ – whatever that means!
‘Think of yourself as dead. You have lived your life. Now take what’s left and live it properly.’
Marcus Aurelius (121-180 AD), Roman Emperor, Stoic philosopher.
RIP Prince Philip
Stay safe; stay strong; stay smiling.