This is one of the many valuable suggestions leading American coach Stephen Covey mentions in his best seller: ” The 7 Habits of Highly Effective people” . Continuing on my mission here to raise your awareness of the importance of being aware of what legacy we are leaving behind knowing that all of us have a unique purpose, mission in life which gives direction and meaning to our life. That we need to detect it and it is through living it that we feel fulfilment and happiness.
We have covered so far why it is important and started defining our roles and our core values, but today I wanted to mention this exercise which is maybe faster to do and will help point you in the right direction.
Sit somewhere quiet where you will be undisturbed, with your notebook and pen ready to capture your thoughts and relax… Imagine yourself quietly entering a church, you walk gently down the aisle noticing many people you know in the aisles alongside. The atmosphere is subdued and peaceful. Maybe the organ is playing and rays of sun are filtering through the painted glass of the church windows. You see a casket on the alter surrounded by flowers and gently approach it… And yes, it is you lying there peacefully at the end of your life. Once you have recovered from the shock, you sit to the side and listen to the service. Three people take turns to talk about you and the impact you had on their lives and on the lives of others: a family member, a friend and maybe someone you worked with if relevant. What do they say about you? What was your mark on the world? Is it what you would want them to say?
I had quite a revelation when I did that and one of my sons stood up to talk. He somehow mentionned some of the things I would have wanted him to: That I was funny and had loads of ideas and encouraged and motivated them but he also said I pushed a lot and could get quite bad tempered when they didn’t fulfil my expectations, that it was hard living up to my standard of always doing your best, that I was always very busy rushing about doing hundreds of things at the same time and didn’t make time to really listen to what they were saying….and I knew this was true. The advantage of this formula is you can work on it immediately and start living the life you want to have lived and having the impact you want to have on others RIGHT NOW. So let’s make it happen!