Life Reflection Stories
Getting to the Heart of What Really Matters
Sharing the stories of how we traveled through our life journey – our unique experiences, life lessons and nuggets of wisdom – can help us get to the heart of what really matters. We gain a greater sense of purpose and direction for living our own life when we reflect upon our past, and we help shape the path for our loved ones as they find meaning and inspiration from our footprints.
What is a Life Reflection Story?
Stories are what make us human, setting us apart from all other species. Your own Life Reflection Story goes a step further and sets you apart from all other humans. It is a way to share your unique experiences, observations, beliefs and feelings as nuggets of wisdom for those closest to your heart: your intimate circle of family and friends. Unlike lengthy memoirs, a Life Reflection Story is typically comprised of short stories or vignettes that share your life experiences one bite-sized nugget at a time.
Why are Life Reflection Stories Important?
Stories are how we transmit the wisdom, life lessons, and compassion we have gained in our lifetime to the next generation. They inspire us, connect us to something bigger than ourselves, give meaning to the complexities of life, and help us model our behavior.
The impact of writing and sharing your Life Reflection Story is profound on two levels. It gives you, the writer, greater perspective and understanding of your own life, even helping you find significance and purpose going forward. And it gives your loved ones insights and wisdom, a connection to their past, a richer understanding of who you are, and a new perspective on their own lives. It provides them with real life examples of how to understand and cope with life's quandaries as they continue along their life journeys.
Recent research indicates that children who know their family life stories and history have higher self-esteem and are better prepared to handle life's ups and downs. Additionally, engaging in life reflection during difficult times often results in greater resiliency and hope.
When would I write a Life Reflection Story?
The most meaningful gifts
we leave our loved ones come from our heart. Writing our Life Reflection Stories should not be put off until we have fully lived our lives. Here are some common motivators or life events that may
prompt you to write your stories and share your experiences, life lessons and wisdom with your loved ones:
- To mark our own life milestones.
- To celebrate our children's life events and special milestones.
- To celebrate the lives of our parents and grandparents.
- To share our family heritage, customs and traditions.
- To gain insights into our life lived so far.
- As we embark upon significant life transitions.
- Throughout our lifetime.
- Whenever the spirit moves us!
- Any time is a good time, but don't wait.
Recognize that one of the unique benefits of Life Reflection Stories is that you can choose to write one story or create a whole series throughout your lifetime.
How would I write a Life Reflection Story?
A Life Reflection Story does require some reflection. It happens when we take time to be introspective, to
review our life journey so far, to ponder our life lessons, and to think about what is most important to share. In this form of story writing it is important to share our thoughts, perceptions and
feelings, as our loved ones want to know what was most important in our lives and to learn from our unique experiences – both the good and the difficult – and the life lessons that came from
Consider these possible approaches to writing your Life Reflection Story:
1. If you are comfortable with the writing process, start with a blank sheet of paper or with journals and writings you have completed over your lifetime.
2. Use the Life Reflection Stories Workbook, which includes prompts and examples to get you started.
3. Have a facilitator work with you personally to guide you through the process. Certified Legacy Facilitators are available to coach you through your Legacy Journey via phone consultations, in-person sessions or group writing workshops.
Learn about Ethical Wills, see Tab on top left of this page.
Want to learn something else about Ethical Wills, or Legacy Letters, or Life Reflections? Just click on this link, and it will take you to a recent article published by the New York Times, which you will enjoy and learn.
Enjoy, and do your own Ethical Will.