Father’s Day weekend is an easy time to think about legacies.
It was especially easy yesterday, as I was on a video shoot to promote pride, commitment, and mobility within our company. We shot interviews with a family – father, mother, and son, who all proudly worked for the same company. It’s with a sense of strong family pride that the son reports to work each day.
Multi-generational pride brought a tear to my eyes a few times during the shoot, and I look forward to completing the video and sharing its powerful story.
At times yesterday, it was the tangible items of a toolbox from the 1970’s, or a coffee mug that was produced 30 years ago – while at other times it’s the sight of tears welling up in the eyes of parents as they describe the feelings they had, when they learned their son went to work for the company they once were so proud to work for.
“Carve your name on hearts, not tombstones. A legacy is etched into the minds of others and the stories they share about you.” —Shannon L. Alder
During the day I thought a few times about the legacy my father left behind, since he is no longer alive.
Legacy is a daunting thing, since we don’t really get to pick what others will remember in our wake, whether we’ve passed on forever, or are just no longer around much – it’s up to others to decide.
Those who know us best will rarely judge us solely on words. Words are cheap and easy – it’s the actions behind and beside the words that really mean anything.
It’s the things we actually do between sunrise and sunset – and between sunset and sunrise again. The stirrings of the heart that we experience during the quiet times, and the actions we put into place for the things that actually matter to us.
Creating a legacy is a fast- paced contact sport, intermingled with commitment, sweat, tears, scraped knees, and broken hearts – the actions and evidence that shows that we actually did something, or tried to do something – about something.
Giving it our all, when there’s no scoreboard in site. And most of know that during the most important times in life, a scoreboard only gets in the way.
I rarely think about legacy at all, because I’m too busy trying to focus on the things that matter – and knowing that my legacy one day will come down to what I did yesterday, today – and also what I’ll do tomorrow – the things that personally matter to me, and can’t always be quantified or really measured.
“I think the whole world is dying to hear someone say, ‘I love you.’ I think that if I can leave the legacy of love and passion in the world, then I think I’ve done my job in a world that’s getting colder and colder by the day.” —Lionel Richie
It all comes down to the things we actually do between sunrise and sunset – and between sunset and sunrise again.