How to Stop Existing and Start Living


Most people wonder whether there is a difference between living and existing. Those who know the difference ask how can they stop existing and start living.  I also sometimes turn to ask myself whether I’m living or just existing.  But, the question is, how do I know that I’m living or existing?  Thus, in this article, I shared some insights into both areas.

Are you living or existing: Self-testing Tips

Nine tips can help to know your status of either living or existing. The tips cover the following main areas namely; control, knowing your why, following your dreams, living up to your potential, doing what you want, loving to work up in the morning, setting goals, moving forward, and the degree of freedom.

1. Control

Ask yourself if there is anybody or anything that controls your life. If the answer is yes, then you are not in control of your life, hence you are just existing, but if the answer is no, then you have control and you are living and not existing.

2. Knowing your Why

Since you have control, you should then know why you are doing what you are doing in life. There should be a sense of belonging in all the things you do.

3. Following your dreams

Everybody has got his own dreams the question you need to ask yourself is if at all you are following your dreams. If the answer is yes, then you have started living but if the answer is no, be sure that you’re just existing.

4. Living up to your potential

You also need to ask yourself if you are living your potential. If yes, you are on track; you either have started living or you are living already. If the answer is no, you are still far from living.

5. Doing what you want to do

He who does what he wants to do is living and will do it passionately and with joy but people who are existing will only do what he has to do. So ask yourself that are you doing what you want to do or doing what you have to do.

6. Love to wake up

A person who is living will love to wake up every morning and be eager to start the day. Do you love waking each morning, eager to start the day? If yes there you are because you have a purpose to fulfill and are eager to do it.

7. Setting goals

Do you set your own goals or allowed someone to set them for you? This is one of the questions that will help you to test if you are living or merely existing.  A person who is living is a driver of his journey. If you allowed other people or things to drive you, then, are just existing.

8. Moving forward

Living is a journey that allows you to move from one step to the other. The question is “are you moving forward or merely running here and there and stagnating? The answer to this question will tell you whether you are living or existing.

9. Degree of freedom

Do you feel free or slaved? To be able to live you must be able to fight for your dreams. Without freedom you will have to attend to other peoples’ plans, not yours; and in this case, you are just existing.

Simple Guides to Stop Existing and Start Living

Thus, living involves happiness, passion, and interest. When someone lives mean he or she has clear meaningful goals, works with passion, and takes time to enjoy life. In other words, when you start living means you have control of your life, you make decisions and do not just do anything necessary to remain alive (exist). Living means you have an aim and purpose in life. Most people have forgotten to live rather they exist, meaning they just survive and simply remain alive without knowing. This article today is about how we should stop existing and start living.

1. Be honest with people

Be open to people, there is an unprecedented kind of connection you get when you turn to someone and admit that you are struggling just like they are. The human condition is far less of a burden when you finally realize you are not alone. Stop pretending everything is okay when it is not. Be honest with people and also yourself don’t fake happiness just for others to see you okay while you are not.

2 . Try new things

There must be something that you wished you would try but you have always been afraid to jump into it. Whatever it is, open up and try them, you might learn new things that would lighten up your life and make you see the aim of life. Once you see the aim of your creation,  you will be comfortable with whatever God has blessed you with. Stop moving just where life takes you just because you are a human being. Trying new things will open up your mind and make you see beyond your normal understanding. There is a lot to live that we don’t know and God would love us to experience it to know him more.

3 . Value and appreciate what you are and what you have

Life is not about riches. On the contrary, many rich people are just existing and not living because they just go through in life accumulating wealth that makes them busy all the time making money. They don’t have time to live and enjoy life, enjoy what nature holds, and enjoy what God bestowed on them. Whatever God has given you, you should appreciate and value it because not everyone has what you have. While you are out there thinking that God has left you, some people are looking at you saying you are blessed and wish God would bless them like you.

4 . Accept failure as a normal part of life

Life is not always about winning. Most successful people failed a lot to get where they are. Accepting that failure is part of life is knowing that we human beings are not perfect. When we fail we learn to progress. Stop holding back just because things are not going the way you wanted them to go. Embrace every moment, and be positive even in negative encounters.

5 . Make yourself a priority

Live for yourself and don’t fake it to impress other people. Learn to mind your happiness first, do what you like, eat what you like, and go places you like. Stop doing things just because you have to do them. Most people who are existing rather than live are just moving wherever the wave takes them to make a survival. Make yourself a priority, do what you like, and struggle to make sure you take care of your needs first. Doing that will give a lot of meaning to life and put a smile on your face.

6 . Smile more

I know this might sound simple but it has a lot of impact on our lives. A smile releases a whole host of feel-good hormones, and it is the quickest and easiest way to feel good. Smiling can even distract your enemies. When you smile more often you attract happiness and put meaning to life even in hard times.

7 . Find what makes you happy.

Whether it is a hobby or something that you used to love doing but you stopped maybe because business got in the way. Do that more often because happiness has a lot of meaning in life. Remember that if you are not happy means you are not living.


In conclusion, living life to the fullest requires a conscious effort and a willingness to change. It requires taking action, setting goals, and making plans to reach those goals. It requires taking risks, trying new things, and being open to new experiences. It requires breaking away from old habits and routines and embracing the unknown. It requires letting go of fear, being brave, and having faith in yourself and your capabilities. Most importantly, it requires living in the present moment and enjoying the journey. When you stop existing and start living, you will discover a whole new world of possibilities and joy.

By Deodatus R . Mgembe