How does one add meaning to a legacy?
There are many ways to create a fuller, richer legacy to leave behind for your loved ones.
Here are some examples:
• Ethical wills/legacy letters – These documents have been around almost since the beginning of writing. They tend to be measured in pages rather than chapters. The idea is to succinctly document key elements of one’s life. The format itself is a direct, personal message to the recipient, lending itself to messages of advice, hopes, and explanations.
• Memoir/autobiography – Memoirs aren’t just for the rich and famous. The goal isn’t to get on the New York Times best seller list. A memoir gives the narrator room to reminisce about family, growing up, selecting a career, having children, and so on. These are the events that shape us. Sharing that information with others is an act of love, not an act of selfishness or an inflated ego.
• Family history books – These books tend to be historical in nature and incorporate more photos or brief anecdotes than narrative. They’re often brimming full of old documents like genealogy records, photos, letters, etc. How did the family get to this country? Who were the players? Where did they liveand what did they do?
• Family business books – Unlike a corporate history developed by the marketing department inside the company, family business books capture the personal stories of the family members involved, which are not always appropriate or interesting to the general public. In these books, you’d expect to see documents relating to the company’s formation, photos of the products sold, of company buildings, and of iconic moments alongside the experience of the family members involved.