We all want to be remembered. Fondly remembered, preferably of course. For as long as we are in the hearts and minds of those we love, our memory and our legacy endures. When most of us think about leaving behind a legacy we may think about those tangible items that we leave behind for our loved ones to see, hold, feel and remember us by. Another huge part of our legacy is also the love we’ve share, the hope we’ve given, the lives we’ve changed (or at least inspired), and the wisdom we’ve shared. Here are 5 meaningful ways to leave your legacy.
Make Meaningful Connections
Each day instead of simply engaging in the small talk, try to make real connections with people and have authentic conversations. Instead of automatically uttering a “how are you”, especially if you are speaking to a friend who is struggling, wait a moment and really listen to the answer they give. Take special moments with each of your children, no matter how old they are, to find out how they are doing. Ask them about things that are important to them and listen to them. If this isn’t something you are used to doing, it may feel a bit awkward at first, but I assure you, the more you authentically engage with people — the more joy you will feel in your life. You will also touch more lives and you’ll be remembered as a thoughtful compassionate person who really cared — and even in this busy life, slowed down to take moments to connect. Leave a legacy of love.
Live with Purpose
Waking up in the morning, getting ready, going to work, coming home, eating dinner, going to bed — the next day, repeat. Do you have a purpose? Are you living with purpose? Instead of just checking off your to-do list day after day, being intentional in what you do is important. Having a purpose can mean many things to many people. Our work is a way we live with purpose, we take care of our families, serve our community, stand-up for those who can’t stand-up for themselves. Make your mark by living your passion and touching the lives of others. This is a wonderfully fulfilling way to — leave a lasting legacy.
Live with a joyful heart. I know we don’t always feel 100% joyful and happy. It can be hard if you struggle with chronic pain or bouts of depression. However, when you do things purely out of the kindness of your heart, you are filling up your joy supply and you are bringing joy to others. It doesn’t have to be anything elaborate — taking a cart back for a young mother with her arms full as you head into the store spreads kindness. Giving a smile to someone who looks like they lost theirs somewhere along the way, is another. If you are looking for some inspiration I highly recommend checking out ILikeGiving there are some wonderfully inspiring stories of just pure kindness there. Leave a legacy of kindness. Here’s one of my favorite videos to get you started.
I Like Being 98
Invest in the Next Generation (and Beyond!)
We touched on this a bit at the beginning, spending time to invest in the lives of your children, grandchildren and others family members is a wonderful way to leave a legacy. You can also take time to volunteer in schools by helping children who need extra help with reading or math. Some schools also have “Lunch Buddy” programs where you can go and spend time with kids who just need a friend. There are opportunities available to help kids and invest in their lives — check within your community, your church, through charitable organizations. Sharing your time and talent is a beautiful gift. You could make a huge impact without even knowing it. You could change a life. Leave a legacy of hope.
Write, Write and Write some More…
You’ve got so much wisdom to share. Write it down. Just put pen to paper and all of those things that you want future generations to know — tell them! Leave a legacy of wisdom.