My friend’s grandfather just passed away and it was clear how much he meant to his entire family. When someone passes it’s natural to reflect on your own mortality. There was an episode of Oprah that I’ll never forget; her guest suggested that you think backwards. Picture your gravestone and think of the words written on it. What would you want it to say? What do you want your legacy to be?
I’d want my gravestone to read, “Loving, wife, mother and grandmother.” (See how I threw in grandmother there? I don’t want to kick the bucket until I’m at least 92.) And I’d also want it to say, “Author and philanthropist. She helped others to help themselves.” How could a life be better spent than helping others find their own strength for a greater good?
Riches and power are the lure of the centuries, but true power is touching someone’s life. People tend to talk about the big things: weddings and graduations, promotions and trophies. But it’s the little things we truly prize. The way our mother tucked us into bed at night. The one tough teacher who demanded 100% effort us. The whisper in our ear from our true love, “I’m so proud of you.”
Each detail, each kindness, is a little thread in the tapestry of our lives. What mark are you making in the lives of people around you? Is it the mark you want to make? If not, change it. You decide every day of your life what kind of legacy you want to leave.
Make your mark a good one.
What do you want your legacy to be?
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