How to Evaluate Your Life Choices


We all have moments where we wonder what all of our hard work is for– what is the pay-off? We pursue the many things we want in life– careers, relationships– but sometimes could use a little guidance. We look for signs to reaffirm our decisions; to keep our faith in ourselves and our journey strong.

Imagine this scenario:

You decide to have coffee at your neighborhood Starbucks. Seated at a small table by the window a man asks if he can take the seat next to you. “It’s free. No one is sitting here,” you say. “Thank you,” says the stranger.

He deliberately maintains eye contact with you as he reaches into his pocket and hands you a business card. It reads: “Dr. Jon Maker: Dream Factory Director of Choices.” Not sure what to make of the card, you look at him puzzled. He extends his hand. “Dr. Jon Maker. Good to meet you. You have been selected by my team of researchers to receive our proposal.

“Seems like you have been looking for a sign from the heavens that you have made the right choices in life. Your mind races, you aren’t at peace. You seek some reassurance that your efforts and the path you have chosen will eventually lead you to a rainbow,” he says. “I am here to not only offer you reassurance, but to guarantee you will achieve everything you have ever hoped for. I will provide every possible form of happiness and monetary success for you and your family. Generations of your family will be in a better place,” he adds.

“And in exchange…” he pauses. “your life will be cut short. When and where are unknown. You will pass away peacefully and without pain, but you will do so before you reach old age,” he says.

“And I will have achieved all my dreams, left a wonderful legacy and provided for my family and generations thereafter a good life?” you ask.

“Absolutely,” he answers. “This offer has been made to many before you and will be made to many after you.”

Stunned by the proposition, you politely excuse yourself. “I have your card Dr. Maker, I will be in touch,” you say.

Instead of riding the subway that afternoon, you walked the 25 blocks downtown to your apartment. You wonder whether those dreams that seemed so important to you hours earlier would be worth spending less time on this planet with your family and friends. You wonder whether others had made the deal with Dr. Maker and died tragically after having made their mark in this world: Michael Jackson, DJ AM, Heath Ledger, Gianni Versace, Bruce Lee, Tupac, Otis Redding, Kurt Cobain, Jim Morrison. Did they make the deal? Would you make the deal?

In recent articles this year, The Wall Street Journal and Sports Illustrated referred to Idan Ravin as the “Hoops Whisperer” because of his unique ability to engage, inspire and challenge the many NBA players he trains. Idan has worked with many of the NBA’s elite, including Chris Paul (New Orleans Hornets), Carmelo Anthony (Denver Nuggets), Gilbert Arenas (Washington Wizards), Lebron James (Cleveland Cavaliers), Elton Brand (Philadelphia 76ers), Jason Richardson (Phoenix Suns) and Rudy Gay (Memphis Grizzlies).