In this week’s Torah portion, Parshat Vayigash, Yaakov and his family traveled to Egypt with all their livestock and possessions after finding out that Yosef was still alive. After arriving, Yosef brought his father to meet with Pharaoh. During the interaction, Pharaoh asked Yaakov an interesting question: “כמה ימי שני חייך”–“How many are the days of the years of your life?”
Out of all of the question Pharoah could have asked, why this one specifically? Pharaoh did not really care to know Yaakov’s real age, but rather how many days that he actually felt alive during his life. How many days of Yaakov’s life were lived to its fullest potential? This was because those days would actually determine the years of his life. From this simple question we are able to learn a tremendous lesson. People often confuse activity with accomplishments. Although our days are occupied with various tasks, how often do we actually accomplish something important? Everyday we should live our life to its fullest extent and try to strive for greatness.