A while ago I had a conversation with a friend who’s a bit of a workaholic. He doesn’t really need to work as hard or long as he does, but he does.
I asked him why he works so much. He said he’s trying to build an empire. “Don’t you want to build an empire?” he asked me “don’t you want to leave a legacy and be remembered when you die?”
Here’s my answer to that…
Charles Schultz (nicknamed Sparky), a world famous cartoonist and creator of the “Peanuts” comic strip, has a philosophy I agree with:
- Name the five wealthiest people in the world
- Name the last five Heisman Trophy winners
- Name the last five winners of the Miss America pageant
- Name ten people who have won the Nobel or Pulitzer Prize
- Name the last half dozen Academy Award winners for best actor and actress
- Name the last decade’s worth of World Series winners
How did you get on?
I thought so…
Those people are all outstanding in their fields, yet most of us we don’t remember them!
Let’s see how you get on with these:
- List a few teachers, or a particular one who helped your journey through school or college
- Name three friends who’ve helped you through a difficult time
- Name five people who’ve taught you something worthwhile
- Think of a few people who’ve made you feel appreciated and special
- Think of five people you enjoy spending time with
I bet you’ve done much better this time, right?
One of the great recent discoveries about the brain is that most of the neural messaging originates in the limbic system, the emotional part of the brain.
Our brain doesn’t remember empires, legacies or prizes… it remembers what touches us on an emotional level.
What’s the lesson here?
The people we remember are not those with the most money, awards or credentials… the people we remember are those who’ve made a difference in our lives or have made us feel special.
We remember those who cared.