What Will My Legacy Be?

Great Wall of China
The Great Wall of China, a national legacy

Following on from my previous blog entry, another train of thought that arose for me as I attended Christina’s funeral service last week was related to my legacy.

  • What will I be remembered for?
  • What value will my presence in this world have added?
  • How will others’ remember me?
  • What would I like to be remembered for?

As I reflected on different stages of my life, I recognised that my legacy and how I would be remembered has changed over time. Twenty years ago I founded the Project Management Institute (PMI) New Zealand chapter, and subsequently served on the international board of PMI. At that point in my life I would have been remembered by a good number of project managers around the world, and some may have thought, “Stephen added value to my career. He made a difference to this profession.”

My ideas about what is important have changed (dare I say ‘matured’?) with time. That question, ‘what do I want to be remembered for?’ is much more significant for me now. I realise that I need to act congruently with my life purpose. I now have more of a clue what that is for me. When I am ‘on purpose’ I have energy and passion that I experience in no other way. I know that when I live in tune with my life purpose I don’t care what people will remember me for. Nor do I care how they judge me now. Instead I live my life for me. Then, I am fully intent on living a meaningful and satisfying life that engages my head, heart and gut in pursuing what truly matters to me. In doing that I maximise the likelihood of creating real value in my life that may benefit others, but that is a bonus, not the motivation. And I am getting better at staying connected with my purpose and living it.

What would you like to be remembered for? Are you living your life in line with your purpose? If not, when will you start doing so?

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