Today Is The First Day Of the Rest Of Your Life Quote, Song Lyrics, History, Who Said And Why It Is True

by Sherry Riter in Attitude,Change,Choice,Lessons of Life,Self-Development  

blue sky sunrise reflecting on the ocean

Quote: “Today is the first day of the rest of your life.”

I think the title, “Today Is The First Day Of the Rest Of Your Life Quote, Song Lyrics, History, Who Said And Why It Is True” is rather comprehensive AND long, don’t you think? So this post is jam packed with insight, information, inspiration, motivation, words and feelings.

I heard some of you just say, “Oh no! Feelings? Heaven help us all if we have to talk about feelings because Sherry, The Redhead Riter, sure does get mushy gushy sometimes and she can even make my eyes water with tears. I don’t want to feel tears!”

Oh hush. I’m not going to get THAT touchy feely nor will I make you cry today. I really just want to share some interesting information with you and a story that I hope you will enjoy. Shall I begin?

Everything in this post today is about the following quote:

“Today is the first day
of the rest of your life.”
~ Attributed to Charles E. “Chuck” Dederich, Sr., (1913–1997) ~



Packed full of meaning.

Song Using The Quote: “Today is the first day of the rest of your life.”

There are several songs that use the quote, “Today is the first day of the rest of your life.” John Denver recorded a song with the title, “”Today Is The First Day” and Bread recorded, “Today’s The First Day.” Both are great songs, but I really like the song by Matt Maher entitled, “Hold Us Together.” The song stresses that love is the thing needed to keep us all together and moving forward in today’s society. With love as the foundation, everything in the world would run smoothly. So with that in mind, today is the first day of the rest of your life and everything will end up being alright.

Anyway, it’s a great song and the sentiment is on the right tract as far as I’m concerned. I believe love CAN make a difference. When love is at the forefront of our minds and the reason for our actions, we just can’t go wrong. Reciprocated love can conquer all obstacles because it is kind, respectful, faithful, loyal, dependable and unselfish. I totally believe that love is the answer to our problems both personal and as a world family in general.

I’m including not only the YouTube video of the beautiful song that uses the quote, “Today is the first day of the rest of your life,” but I’ve also attached the lyrics.

Matt Maher sings the 4th track on the album “Alive Again
The title of the song is
Hold Us Together

It don’t have a job, don’t pay your bills
Won’t buy you a home in Beverly Hills
Won’t fix your life in five easy steps
Ain’t the law of the land or the government

But it’s all you need

And love will hold us together
Make us a shelter to weather the storm
And I’ll be my brother’s keeper
So the whole world will know that we’re not alone

It’s waiting for you knocking at your door
In the moment of truth when your heart hits the floor

And you’re on your knees

And love will hold us together
Make us a shelter to weather the storm
And I’ll be my brother’s keeper
So the whole world will know that we’re not alone

This is the first day of the rest of your life
This is the first day of the rest of your life
‘Cause even in the dark, you can still see the light
It’s gonna be alright, it’s gonna be alright

This is the first day of the rest of your life
This is the first day of the rest of your life
‘Cause even in the dark, you can still see the light
It’s gonna be alright, it’s gonna be alright

Love will hold us together
Make us a shelter to weather the storm
And I’ll be my brother’s keeper
So the whole world will know that we’re not alone

Songwriters: Steven Patrick Wilson and Matt Maher
Published by: Meaux Mercy Publishing, Skyline Apartments Music, ThankYou Music, LTD. and Pub

History Of And Who Said The Quote: “Today is the first day of the rest of your life.”

Who was the person that has the quote, “Today is the first day of the rest of your life” attributed to them and what is the history around it?

Charles Dederich was a reformed alcoholic, member of Alcoholics Anonymous and an admired speaker at the Alcoholics Anonymous meetings. Back then, Alcoholics Anonymous did not accept people who were addicted to anything other than alcohol. Dederich wanted to help everyone who had any type of drug addiction, so he decided to start his own program and named it Synanon. It was during this time that he coined the phrase, “Today is the first day of the rest of your life.” As the program progressed, the Synanon members started living in a community that focused on the self-examined life. Part of that examination included “Synanon Game” sessions where people told their secret truths to the group in an effort to abolish their addictions.

Why Is The Quote, “Today is the first day of the rest of your life,” True?

In order to overcome, get past or change habits in your life, there are several things necessary:

  • You must recognize the need for the change.
  • You must be humble enough to admit the need to change.
  • You must seek help to make the change.
  • You have to get rid of pride and allow other people to help you.
  • You must stop doing whatever it is you are trying to abolish from your life.
  • You have to constantly think about the process of changing to ensure you don’t let your guard down to old habits.
  • You have to forgive yourself for the past.
  • You have to replace the old with the new.

That’s a hard list to accomplish.

Changing is an uncomfortable and sometimes painful experience. Old habits truly die hard even if you are miserable with them. Comfortable miserableness is a whole lot less scary that starting over from scratch and laying down the old habit. The older you become and the longer you’ve had the habit, the harder it is to make changes.

Over the past two years, I’ve made more changes in my thought patterns, habits and characteristics than I have at any other time in my life. All of the changes have been necessary. Some I initiated and some were initiated by circumstances or other people. I didn’t “want” to make any of the changes. I “wanted” for things to change without me doing anything. I know that’s the easy way out, but I’m just trying to be honest.

Most of the time, changing is not only hard, but it is also painful. I don’t think the average person wakes up in the morning and says, “Oh great! I want pain!” So I don’t think my attitude is that different than other people. We all would love to change without the pain just like we would prefer to lose weight without giving up any food choices or exercising.

If today is the first day of the rest of your life, WHAT are you going to do with it?

You can hoard all your bad or unhealthy habits, make no changes and live today exactly like yesterday.

Or you can admit that you need to make a change and follow the steps to make a difference in your future.

Why is there truth in the quote, “Today is the first day of the rest of your life” and when is it applicable?

Whether it is a conscious or subconscious choice, each day we decide to remain the same or progress and improve. Each day upon awakening, our body has rejuvenated itself and energized our soul. The things we experienced yesterday are over. The consequences of those actions may still linger, but it is impossible to go back in time and change anything that happened.

When we look towards the future and decide what we want it to include, then the choices of today are clearer. Every day is a new start. Since we can’t go back, then this moment is the only moment we have any control over. The choices we make now determine what consequences or happiness we will experience in the minutes that follow. Today’s choices determines many of tomorrow’s opportunities.

Although we get to start over each day, it is important to remember that we can limit our options in the future by the choices we make today. For instance, if we rob a bank today, get caught by the police and go to jail, our choices have dramatically changed in comparison to what they were before we robbed the bank.

Just because today is a new day and you get to start over, don’t take it for granted. No one knows how many days they have left on this planet, so each moment is precious. When you look at it with that attitude, life suddenly feels more valuable and the choices we make become more important.

Today is the first day of the rest of your life, so what are you going to do with the hours ahead? It’s entirely up to you.

This post was written by...

Sherry Riter is also known as The Redhead Riter. Sherry is witty, intelligent and addictive as she writes about cooking, family, marriage, failures, blogging tips, art, humor, inspiration, travel, PTSD and aging. Her goal is to inspire, motivate, educate and to make her audience laugh. Sherry embraces being a redhead and helps others to see the redhead point of view…"In some eras redheads were worshipped while others thought us witches. Personally, I like the former and think every day is 'Love a redhead day!'" She can also be found on Facebook, Google+, Pinterest, StumbleUpon, Linkedin, tweeting as @TheRedheadRiter and you can subscribe to her free blog feed.

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Joan February 1, 2014 at 6:03 pm

Today is the first day of the rest of my life. What am I going to do with the hours ahead? So many choices. I really do not know at the moment what I’m going to do. It comes down to eliminating the many choices in order to do what is most important today – and I can tell you it’s not doing the dishes, the laundry, going to the bank, (no, I must go to the bank today because the rent is due). Well, I can actually put off going to the bank until Monday, but I know that I won’t want to go to the bank on Monday either, so I might as well go to the bank today and get it over with. I have less than one hour to get to my bank before it closes today.

Okay, I’ve decided what I will do today. I will go to the bank, do the dishes, wash the laundry and go grocery shopping. Not necessarily in that order. (And here you thought I live such a glamorous lifestyle.)

Oh, but here’s something exciting I’m going to do today, I’m going to buy a bouquet of fresh flowers. I love fresh flowers, especially if the colors resonate with my mood. Fresh flowers lift my spirit every time I look at them. Today I’m going to make up my own bouquet and choose pink and white flowers, and if they don’t have pink flowers, (they always have white flowers), then I’ll choose purple flowers, probable irises, to go with my white flowers and I’ll also get some green foliage to add some more color, or maybe I’ll just end up buying a colorful bouquet of many different flowers. I don’t know. So many choices and then I still have to decide what I want to eat for dinner tonight while I’m grocery shopping. Then I have to decide it I want to eat something fattening or something healthy.

I’m telling you there are just too many choices that I have to make today, but tomorrow will be another day and tomorrow will be the first day of the rest of my life. I definitely know what I’m going to do tomorrow. I’m going to get up early and work on the rewrite of my new screenplay. That’s really what I wanted to do today. All I really wanted to do today was write, but there are days when you just can’t write. Those are the days when life’s mundane duties call out to you. 🙂


2 Sherry Riter February 1, 2014 at 6:35 pm

LOL Well thank you Joan for sharing you day with us! However, you are right that sometimes the mundane tasks have to be done instead of the things we really want to do. I want to write every day too and I actually almost do. LOL 😛


3 Joan February 2, 2014 at 1:09 am

Are you trying to make me look bad? You don’t have to rub it in. I KNOW THAT YOU WRITE almost everyday on your blog and I haven’t written on my blog in three years. (No, I haven’t abandoned my blog, I’m just taking a vacation from it. A very long vacation.) What can I say? My life is mundane. I told you all the mundane things I had to do today. At least I comment almost everyday on your blog to keep up my writing skills.

Oh, before I forget, let me tell you about the fresh flower bouquet I bought today on my grocery shopping excursion. (Yes, I went grocery shopping after I went to the bank.) I bought white hydrangeas, yellow sunflowers and purple irises. I also added in a lot of green foliage to the bouquet. It is so beautiful. Every time I look at the flowers, sitting in a clear glass vase on my kitchen table, it lifts my spirits so much that I almost forget all my problems and how mundane my life really is.

What problems do I have you may ask? Sherry don’t ask. I’ve been trying to sell my screenplay for the past eight years. If you had any idea how close I have come to selling it and the legendary actresses who have read it and wanted to star in it. But being close to selling a screenplay means nothing in Hollywood. Close is meaningless. Now, as if I didn’t have enough problems trying to sell this screenplay, I have written another screenplay, (not that I have giving up on my other screenplay. I still believe I am very close to selling it). Delusion is an important part of surviving in Hollywood. One has to believe that they are going to sell their screenplay, even if they don’t have a snowball’s chance in Hades of selling it. So the more delusional one becomes about their ability to make it in Hollywood the better off they are. Because once it becomes clear to you that this is not going to happen, that you are not going to sell your screenplay, then the dream is over. And as we all know, dreams die hard.

So now I’m wondering how long it’s going to take me to sell my new screenplay. Problems, problems, problems. Is it any wonder that I have turned to buying fresh flowers? When one’s life is mundane and filled with problems one can always count on flowers to cheer themselves up. And besides, tomorrow is another day. The first day of the rest of my life. 🙂


4 Sherry Riter February 2, 2014 at 8:10 am

A vacation? Ummm…no comment. 😉

I know you comment on almost EVERY post and I appreciate it soooooooo much! Not only do I enjoy the feed back, but I get to know you better. 😀

The flowers sound beautiful. I love flowers too and they CAN lift your spirits. I had a gardenia bush in my yard when I lived in Texas. That’s my favorite flower and when the flowers bloomed…oh my, I would spend hours just smelling them.

I’m sorry about your screenplay, but don’t give up hope. Everyone who reads it loves it and I’m SURE that you are going to hit the jackpot soon. Just when it gets the darkest, the rainbow appears. Yeah, I just said that…See? Your brainwashing must be working! LOL


5 Joan February 2, 2014 at 3:35 pm

“Just when it gets the darkest, the rainbow appears.” Sherry, I can’t believe you said that! Now YOU are giving me back MY OWN ADVICE. Well, I needed to hear my own advice. So, thank you for reminding me.

The thought of not selling my screenplay is a very dark thought, because I know how good it is. That is not being conceited, but knowing my talent as a writer and believing in it. The most important lesson one has to learn in any of the creative fields they choose to undertake is to believe in your own talent. Because when you are an unknown you have no one to champion you but yourself. Then when you finally do make it everyone is singing your praise.

Well, I know I’m going to make it, so I’m not giving up. Rejection is just part of the game. That’s another important lesson I have learned, never to take rejection personally, and I don’t. So, there you have my two Hollywood lessons: Believe in your own talent and do not take rejection personally.

And then, of course, we all know that today is the first day of the rest of your life. And if today does not bring you your long awaited dream, then tomorrow is another day. And if tomorrow does not bring you your long awaited dream then you still have the day after tomorrow. As long as one has life they have hope.

And when all else seems to fail, remember: One can always buy themselves flowers. Flowers always lift my spirits, just as a dog wagging its’ tail and kissing me does, (but I’m not going to get myself a dog. As much as I love dogs, cats and birds that’s a completely other story). 🙂


6 Sherry Riter February 2, 2014 at 6:27 pm

I’m glad that I could help you with your own great advice. LOL 😛 😀

Definitely true that tomorrow is a new day and new opportunity. You WILL sell that screenplay. You WILL!!! 🙂


7 July 28, 2016 at 12:24 am

Many of the options detailed right here could turn into habits after a time frame, and
wholesome habits assist construct a wholesome life.


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