What would you say if you could give one last talk before you die? This question was the premise of a lecture series at Carnegie Mellon University, where professors were asked to speak as if it was their last lecture.
For most professors, it was just a thought exercise. But for Randy Pausch, a computer science professor, it was literally true. Just 46 years old, Pausch had recently been diagnosed with terminal cancer, and he had been given only six months to live.
Pausch’s topic for his last lecture was living, not dying—and naturally, he wanted to convey the importance of time. One piece of advice he offered during the lecture was to treat time like it’s money. Time is the most valuable thing that you have, and as Pausch knew too well, you may have less of it than you think.
For more of the wisdom Pausch passed on to his students, check out our Instaread on The Last Lecture.