5 Ways to Leave a Legacy

This is guest post from Jon Gordon. Jon is the international bestselling author of a number of books including The Energy Bus: 10 Rules to Fuel Your Life, Work and Team with Positive Energy, and Soup: A Recipe to Nourish Your Team and Culture. Learn more at www.JonGordon.com

Every one of us is going to leave a legacy. It just depends on what kind.

What kind of legacy do you want to leave?

I encourage you to think about it because knowing how you want to be remembered helps you decide how to live and work today. Consider the following ways to leave a legacy and then identify other legacies you can share.

1. A Legacy of Excellence – Saint Francis of Assisi said, “It’s no use walking anywhere to preach unless your preaching is your walking.” To leave a legacy of excellence, strive to be your best every day. As you strive for excellence you inspire excellence in others. You serve as a role model for your children, your friends and your colleagues. One person in pursuit of excellence raises the standards and behaviors of everyone around them. Your life is your greatest legacy and since you only have one life to give, give all you can.

2. A Legacy of Encouragement – You have a choice. You can lift others up or bring them down. Twenty years from now when people think of you, what do you want them to remember? The way you encouraged them or discouraged them? I spent a few days with Ken Blanchard, author of The One Minute Manager, and someone who has had a big impact on my career. I had the opportunity to thank him for his support, encouragement and the difference he has made in my life. He has not only inspired me by the way he lives his life but also by the way he has encouraged me as a writer and speaker. Who will you encourage today? Be the person that someone will call five, ten or twenty years from now and say “Thank you, I couldn’t have done it without you.”

3. A Legacy of Purpose – People are most energized when they are using their strengths and talents for a purpose beyond themselves. To leave a legacy of purpose, make your life about something bigger than you. While you’re not going to live forever, you can live on through the legacy you leave and the positive impact you make in the world.

4. A Legacy of Love – When I think about my Mom I don’t recall her faults and mistakes or the disagreements we had. After all, who is perfect? But what I remember most about her was her love for me. She gave me a legacy of love that I now share with others. Share a legacy of love and it will embrace generations to come.

5. A Legacy of __________________.

Question: From number 5 above, what type of legacy will you choose to leave?

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