Your Personal Legacy: what’s yours?

In Changing life, Life goals, Positivity, Productivity, Resolutions 2012 on August 23, 2012 at 9:56 pm

The Olympic Games got me thinking about the idea of legacy. Legacy was one of the main reasons why the great city won the right to stage the Games, and a great games it was as well.

The Games cost a hell of a lot of sterling, so once the Paralympics are over, a lot of venues will be open and available to generations of Londoners to come, especially the young.

In life, the idea of legacy normally becomes more important as we get older. When we talk about ‘legacy’ we often think about material stuff – last will, testament, money, property and all that kind of stuff.

This idea of legacy is normally always focused on the future – what am I doing for the future, after I’ve gone?

But does legacy need to be so material?

The material matters, but it never goes on forever. Things change, decay, alter and grow.

Maybe the real or best legacy of The Games is not the great venues soon available to many, but the inspiration, positivity and motivation that our athletes demonstrated, providing a wonderful example and lesson to billions around the planet about what hard work, focus, perseverance and self-belief can achieve.

For me, one of the best ways of embracing legacy is the idea you have about yourself that you bequeath to yourself everyday. Not just what you leave the kids or anyone else at the end of your lifetime.

Not the future, but the legacy we leave each and every day – to ourselves and to other people.

Not just the security of money tomorrow, but emotional security today.

Not just some future hope, but certainty within, so you and others can cope with what happens now.

I think this helps us to focus on the actions we take every day. Actions we commit that impact ourselves as well as other people.

It might also encourage us to become a bit more aware about ourselves. About how we direct and use our energy everday – for what, towards what purpose and goal? About each day. About how we use make the best use of the little time we have, or help others to do the same.

It means we have to ask  ‘what am I leaving to myself every day?

What am I offering to myself or giving to other people?

What is the personal or inner legacy I am creating everyday for myself?

Am I storing up a life of opportunity and advantage?

It’s better to leave yourself a positive legacy every day, rather than a negative legacy. The trick is making sure you pour your energy and time into the former rather than the latter, as much as you mentally and practically can.

Not always easy as we all get in a loop and forget how to sometimes.

For me, there a few important things everyone can do to maximise the chances of leaving an inner positive legacy, for others as well as themselves.

Eventually, if practiced enough, the idea that you have about yourself or demonstrate to others, becomes strong enough to take root. You turn a corner or start to see things in a different way. Other people can also take something good from the legacy you’re building up and vice-versa.

This kind of legacy can literally change lives from the inside out and whole generations as much (and maybe even more in some cases) as a financial or material legacy.

Strong inner legacy

Be charitable. To yourself. To other people. Mistakes are always made. Everyone gets insecure about stuff. Opportunities get missed. We get hard on ourselves.

There isn’t much logical or emotional point to letting your mind get caught up wit this kind of thinking for too long.

It only restricts your energy and perception about what is possible in your life and the lives of others.

Practice compassion for yourself. Patience with yourself. Try and take a different perspective. You want the basis of your inner legacy to be positive and realistic.

Learn how to be consistent. Consistency is more important than making some big commitment to anything in life.

Nothing happens without practicing consistency – for small or big goals.

We often crash and burn when saying we going make a commitment to this, or for that. That comes naturally after we learn how to be consistent with something. Step-by-step. Day by day.

Pass to others useful experiences, and in a useful way. Remember, just because something happened to you, it doesn’t mean your story is of any use or relevance to someone else’s life. You just want to recount your woe. If that is the case – shut up, listen and say nothing because it is likely what comes out of your orifice is a pile of baloney.

But good stuff happens to us all at some point. Even good stuff comes out of the bad sometimes. So, if you have a genuine nugget of advice or wisdom, that isn’t coming from your own insecurity, that might be useful for someone to hear perhaps head about your experience. The focus isn’t on you and your ills, but on how you might be able to help them. Pass it on. Offer it up. It is up to the other if they want to hear it or not. It might go over their head. But, on the other hand it might make a big difference. Share positive experiences everyday. Help create more balance in life and the environment you are in.

Think in terms of life as energy, not what am I doing in life or what should I be doing in life? How you use energy everyday?

On what? For what? To what end? Something useful and nourishing? An activity that may help you grow?

We all waste our energy and Lifeforce in lots of way – some more extreme than others. If you are not doing harm to others, try not to be judgemental or be hard on yourself.

Sometimes this kind of use of your energy is a valuable education that leads to different paths, understanding and radical change. It has its own use too.

But try to save energy. Calibrate your focus and direction. Maintain awareness as much as you can.

Weak inner legacy

Refrain from speaking before taking a moment to think. The ‘I’m only being honest’ syndrome is often a poor excuse for sloppy thinking, being judgemental and inability to discipline your mind.

Think about what impact words have on yourself and another. Try and step back from behaviour that sabotages life or enhances destructive habits.

It’s ultimately pointless, and anyway, stops being interesting or fun long before you realised you’ve wasted time and energy, or your life.

The same goes for people who encourage this in you.

Treat people with dignity, not as commodities.  Reciprocity is the energy that helps to keep your life and everyone else moving in a good direction.

At some point if you treat people as valuable in only what they can do for you, whether its material or emotional, the penny will drop, the cord will be broken, reciprocity ceases.

Keep it up long enough, it never becomes possible for honest connections, no-one will ever go the extra mile for you, life becomes full of temporary encounters.


Need, not greed. There is more than enough to go around the world for everyone to be happy.

We all have a responsibility to put a brake on excess when it means constantly taking, more than we put in – whether it’s the lives of others or to the community around us.


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