Lately I have been giving some thought to what we leave behind, especially in terms of our reputation. Whether we leave the neighborhood, the town, the state or this life, we all will leave important things behind us.
My thoughts are centered more on the memories of those we leave behind. Friends, family, co-workers, bosses, employees, you get the idea. All the people we come in contact with on a regular basis who have formed memories of us. Our character, our behavior, our words, our personality.
So it would be a logical thought we want to leave good, lasting memories, or impressions in our wake. We want people to say “Hey, he/she was always optimistic, great pal, looked out for others, compassionate, funny, talented, fair in his/her dealings, etc…”
But what if they don’t? What if we just think that is what they will say. And once we are gone, they can feel free to speak their mind. Good riddence. Bad trash. Trouble. Selfish. Conceited. Haughty. Evil. Heartless. Cocky. Brash. Just plain stupid.
I have to wonder, how would it feel to return one day and find out no one missed you and was glad you left, and worse, is anxious for your departure again? How sad. How possibly devastating. Perhaps even a wake up call. No, this is not a Charles Dickens Christmas story about to unfold. Just plain musings of late.
So the best I guess we can hope for is to leave a positive, good memory trail in our wake. That is my personal goal. I hope it is everyones. And some (like me) might have to stop and pause from time to time, considering what our words and actions are leaving in the minds of those around us.
I will close with this ditty I unearthed from somewhere a while ago. I keep it taped to my desk, along with my many mantras to remind me to keep my eyes on the goals.
Watch your thoughts, they become words.
Watch your words, they become actions.
Watch your actions, they become habits.
Watch your habits, they become character.
Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.