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Your Legacy

March 23, 2011

Have you ever asked yourself, “What is it that I am going to leave behind?”

We often are consumed in the day, in the project, in the current demands on our attention to the extent that we don’t pause to think about the end of the road.

I attended the memorial of a client friend of mine, Gail Lagniness, this past weekend.  She and her husband were partners in a small architectural firm.  We spent the better part of a year envisioning the future of her business, where she wanted her firm to go, how to communicate it, and how to achieve it.

The firm’s website is complete.  The branding is solid.  But now Gail is gone.  We never talked about the end game.  What did she want to leave behind when she moved on?

It made me wonder how many of us really think of this piece of the puzzle.  What mark do we really want to make in this world?  How will our time spent really matter?  How do we want it to matter?

Knowing Gail’s affinity for long term thinking and planning, I suspect Gail knew the answer to the question, “What is it that I am going to leave behind?”  We all need to know the answer to this question, and devote our work and personal energy toward it.  When I worked with Gail, I had no idea that she had less than a year to live.

None of us know how long we have, but all of us should know what it is we want to leave behind when we go.

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