Is this a Hadith or is a statement of someone else?
موتوا قبل أن تموتوا
Mutu qabla an tamutu
Die before you die
This means that one should ponder over death frequently, and even spend some time meditating on what would happen if one were to die and on the events that would follow in the Akhirah.
Allamah Sakhawi (rahimahullah) has cited Hafiz Ibn Hajar (rahimahullah) to have stated that this is not proven as a Hadith.
(Al-Maqasidul Hasanah, Hadith: 1211)
Although I haven’t come across this as the specific statement of anyone, Mulla ‘Ali Qari (Rahimahullah) has mentioned it to be from amongst the proverbs and sayings of the Sufis.
(See Al-Asrarul Marfu’ah, Hadith: 539)
This statement may be quoted as a general encouragement for this noble deed, without attributing it to Rasulullah (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam).
The following has been reported from Sayyiduna ‘Umar (radiyallahu’anhu), which is very similar in purport:
‘Weigh/measure yourselves before you [your deeds] are [physically] weighed [on the day of Qiyamah]. Take account of yourselves, before it is physically done to you, for indeed it will make it easier for you tomorrow if you take account of yourselves [now, ahead of time]…’
(Hilyatul Awliya, Hadith: 135)
Note: Many people prepare for death by focusing on what’s going to be left behind. Whilst that does have a degree of importance, we should focus more seriously on what’s ahead after death. That is the message in the statement of Sayyiduna ‘Umar (radiyallahu’anhu).
And Allah Ta’ala Knows best.