Note: This is part three of a four-part series for April. See Part One here, and Part Two here. So we've defined our legacy (and what it means to you and your life), and set the stage for it in our lives. Now it's time to unleash the power of your legacy and do your thing. I know last week's post was waaaaay longer than anyone would've expected, but I hope that you at least skimmed through it. Because the crux is simple -- putting frameworks in place so you can set the stage for your legacy-leaving life, doing what matters most to you and letting everything else fall into place after.
Today we're really going to touch on how to build on your legacy. We're talking about taking concrete steps and action to build on the legacy you want to leave behind.
This can be really big for many of you in many ways, but business owners can also see this part as your legacy in business.
Look back at your legacy (that two questions that you answered that formed the one sentence of gold), a lot of the time this sentence can be a little general and vague, because we usually want to do big things with our lives. So it can be rather all-encompassing. But what we really want to do today is hone in and refine the second part of your answer, how you can help others with your message.
Think about your ideal day -- one with no obligations, all the money in the world, and all the time you could ever need -- what would you do? Would you rekindle your lifelong love of illustration? Would you start penning your first book? Would you pick up your camera and snap some fine art shots? Would you redecorate your home and let your inner interior designer show?
Think of what you really, really wanted to do with all your heart -- that you know will light you up, will delight you and challenge you.
Chances are, what your legacy is supposed to be all about is hidden in there somewhere. You just stifled it because of fear, lack, societal pressures etc... (And hey, don't be silly okay? Of course we're not talking about anything illegal, or unethical.)
When I did this exercise, I wanted to do a whole bunch of things. Photography, calligraphy, redecorating... The works. But the key here is sieving -- all of that is good and dandy, it truly is, and when you get to the right place you're more than welcome to embark on all the other activities that you want to do, but dig deep with me here for a second. Look beyond the mountain and heap of things that you want to do, those that just seem like a fun and good idea, but isn't really what stirs your deepest desires. You really want to take the one thing (or maybe two) that you willingly, joyfully want to devote this ONE special day to. If you only had 24 hours in this ideal day where nothing could go wrong, you would dedicate it to this activity.
Hey there, you just found what your legacy is all about. Congratulations.
For me, it was really to design and create things that brought people back to God, that was not only pretty but that made my heart sing. That could be used to impact millions and millions of people worldwide, in a good way.
That was pretty cool right? You've now saved hundreds of thousands of dollars in experimenting. You found your heart's desire. What your legacy is supposed to be all about. Something that you might have hidden, but now found again. :)
Now you've got to framework and action-step the heaven out of this discovery. Ask yourself -- do I have what it takes, the skills, the tenacity, to execute this? If yes, great, how can you get better? If no, how can you take steps to get there? Write down all your skills that are related to this thing (anything from being a good typer to being a good color matcher) and all the other things that you can do to complement this.
For mine, I could create workshops to speak to more women, design and manufacture prints and stationery that inspired people, write a book that would spread my heart... The possibilities are endless. Stretch your mind and creativity a little, and just let your juices flow.
Then? Pick a few. Draft out action steps to really execute one or two (for e.g., if it was creating workshops, you would start with creating content, gathering a following etc...) and you are well on your way. You are already building on the legacy you want to and was supposed to leave behind.
You might have just created your business, or refined it. Voila!
How's that? Today was short, sweet and quick-fire. Honestly, I've had clients who built businesses using just these few questions. They can really help you get from lost/confused/overwhelmed/overloaded to clarity/direction/action/a-has.
Really put your heart and soul into this exercise. And I really, really recommend that you've done Part 2 before you tried to embark on this, because the framework for your life will determine how WELL and whether or not you can execute your legacy. So no skip-aheads here!
I come back to these exercises again and again, for every offering, for every "business idea" that pops into my ever-running brain. And I hope it helps you too. :)
Loved this? Get on the list to be notified on the Start with Legacy workshop, free and super awesome, geared to help small business owners (or aspiring ones) who want to refine and hone their idea and make something great happen in 2014 for themselves as well as for others. We are big-hearted, legacy entrepreneurs right here.