August 21 2017

By: Jackie Hook
Monday, August 21, 2017

What is your legacy? It is defined as a gift of property, especially personal property, and as money, by will or by bequest. It is also defined as anything handed down from the past, as from an ancestor or predecessor. In a research study, the concept of legacy is described as having four pillars:

  1. Values and life lessons
  2. Instructions and wishes to be fulfilled
  3. Personal possessions of emotional value
  4. Financial assets and real estate

What the researchers found is that baby boomers and their parents are more concerned about their legacy of family stories then they are about their material possessions and money.

A legacy of family stories is also important to the resiliency of young people, and a study conducted by Drs. Marshall Duke and Robin Fivush involved asking adolescents twenty questions about their family history. They found that children who heard more family stories had higher self-esteem, lower levels of anxiety, fewer behavioral problems, better outcomes in difficult situations, better family functioning, and greater beliefs in their ability to affect their own lives.

It turns out that the practice of assessing your legacy by reviewing your life can also enhance your mental health. Therapists sometimes use a practice called life review therapy to help patients.

                                                                            (First printed in the July 26 Centre County Gazette)

Leave a comment
Name*:
Email:
Comment*:

Comments

Please wait

Previous Posts

June 17 2019

At an education and support group I co-facilitated, we asked the participants to think about who had been the most supportive companions on their grief journeys. The answers came in many forms – fa...

June 10 2019

This week we continue with the theme, Grief. Companions Come in Many Forms.” I share with you now, Alan Wolfelt, Ph.D.’s 11 Tenets of Companioning the Bereaved: Companioning is about… Being pre...

June 3 2019

Our theme this month is “Grief. Companions Come in Many Forms.” Alan Wolfelt, Ph.D., first introduced me to the concept of grief companions. As a spiritual director, the tenets of grief companionin...

May 27 2019

The theme, “Loss. What Never Changes?” makes me think of the classic movie, The Wizard of Oz. After all kinds of loss, Dorothy learns that in order to return home, she doesn’t need the help of the ...

May 20 2019

In order to help us embrace our brokenness and attend to what never changes in loss, it is important to find safe places and communities where our hidden wholeness is welcome.  Our Monday’s Mo...

May 13 2019

Last week we introduced this month’s theme, “Loss. What Never Changes?” and referenced the hidden wholeness within us. In his book, A Hidden Wholeness: The Journey toward an Undivided Life – Welcom...

May 6 2019

Our theme this month is “Loss. What Never Changes?” In the Voices of Grief: Honoring the Sacred Journey documentary we share in the community, author, retreat leader, and speaker, Paula D’Arcy, tal...

April 29 2019

Last week I asked you where you find light, your light that helps you find the path by walking it. An instructor in my spiritual direction training, Nancy Bieber, talks about carrying a lantern as ...

April 22 2019

As you find your path by walking it, it is helpful to take light along the way. In the documentary Voices of Grief: Honoring the Sacred Journey, Paula D’Arcy says, “There are many lamps, there’s on...

April 15 2019

There are as many ways through grief as there are people. To find your unique path by walking it, you allow yourself to grieve. Three skills that can help are: Noticing – Attending and surrender...