We are born to die. What is important is what we do in between. When we look at a tombstone, we see a name, something nice about the person, the year the person was born, the year the person died… and a small dash in between.

The dash is what we do with our lives between the time we are born and the time we die. It is who we are and it will one day be our legacy. Here are some important points about living life in the DASH:

The “D” stands for Determination. Let us live our life with determination so we will be influence on a lot of people whether we want to be or not; let us live life as a positive influence: to encourage, to inspire and to motivate others to be happy and successful.

The “A” stands for Awareness; being aware that everything we do and say has consequences far beyond what we can see with our eyes; that bad company corrupts good character.

The “S” stands for Service. Winston Churchill once said, “We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give.” It is in sharing that we received; it is in loving that we are being loved.

The “H” stands for Humility. Let us live with humility which does not mean that we think less of ourselves, it just means that we think about ourselves less. If we want to be a great influence in the lives of others, then let us live life with humility for he who humbles himself will be exalted; he who exalts himself will be humbled.

Here's a beautiful poem written by Linda Ellis about the Dash between our date of birth and date of death.

I read of a man who stood to speak at the funeral of a friend. He referred to the dates on her tombstone from the beginning to the end.

He noted that first came her date of birth and spoke the following date with tears. But he said what mattered most of all was the dash between those years, (1934 - 1998).

For that dash represents all the time that she spent alive on earth... and now only those who loved her know what that little line is worth. 

For it matters not, how much we own; the cars...the house...the cash. What matters is how we live and love and how we spend our dash.

So think about this long and hard... Are there things you'd like to change? For you never know how much time is left, that can still be rearranged.

If we could just slow down enough to consider what's true and real, and always try to understand the way other people feel.

And be less quick to anger and show appreciation more, and love the people in our lives like we've never loved before.

If we treat each other with respect and more often wear a smile... Remembering that this special dash might only last a little while.

So, when your eulogy's being read with your life's actions to rehash... Would you be proud of the things they say about how you spent your dash?

By Tim Pedrosa


When you were born, you were crying and everyone around was smiling. Live your life so that when you die, you're the one who is smiling and everyone around you is crying.