This book brings the lofty idea of legacies down to earth, showing that even seemingly small actions can have lasting effects.
Legacies aren’t just for Dead People! is a motivational manual for the boomer generation. With a journalist’s talent for clarifying an often misread subject, Robb Lucy demonstrates how legacies come in many forms and sizes, all with the aim of finding deeper significance, connection, and joy in the present while still considering the future.
The book enthusiastically reframes the most common idea of a legacy. Wealth left behind in estate plans becomes less critical than rewarding alternatives, including recording family stories and passing down personal values, which are both achievable while one is still alive. Emphasis on how legacies are for everyone, and not only for influential individuals, results in a call to consider unique ways to better one’s community, and in some instances, the world. Lists, brainstorming exercises, examples, and personal insights gather around a few core principles to jump-start the process.
The bullet-point approach is well measured and is punctuated by apt quotations, including lyrics by Bob Dylan, proverbs from several cultures, and brief selections from famous authors that crystallize the urgency to make a difference while there is still time. All of these enrich the topic, placing legacies within a broad context that spans history. A section on religions, highlighting the many variations of the Golden Rule, also strengthens the view that there exists a profound human need to consider others.
Chapters provide a convincing, step-by-step guide toward self-discovery. Black-and-white illustrations of a mountaintop guru also infuse the topic with humor. One of the strongest sections offers snapshots of adults who have found their niche. Whether engaging in a neighborhood beautification project or turning adversity into a chance to inspire others, these individuals bring the lofty idea of legacies down to earth, showing that even seemingly small actions can have lasting effects. Another section on charities and foundations provides useful thoughts for those who prefer to create legacies in partnership with established organizations. A general overview, which purposefully leaves out detailed financial advice, is enough to point readers in the right direction.
Legacies aren’t just for Dead People! presents an uplifting view of the good that can be accomplished when people turn their focus outward. Like a lively seminar, the ideas drawn here encourage and challenge, repeat and build on each other to press the belief that every voice has a singular note to add to the larger symphony.
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