Legacy. We’ve all heard of this. We have all beneﬁted from others’. And most of us hope to leave one of our own. But how many of us know what our legacy will be? And if we don’t know, how do we create it? As a whole, leaving a legacy isn’t really something we think about so much when we are younger. Sure, we may have goals, dreams and desires, but we have so much discovery to go through before we know ourselves well enough to understand what kind of impact we will truly have when we leave this earth. As I’ve gotten older, my own growth in self-discovery and shaping of my own personal legacy have gone hand in hand. The more I learn about myself, the more aware I become of the potential for what I can leave behind.
The dictionary deﬁnes the word as ‘an amount of money or property left to someone in a will, or a thing handed down by a predecessor’. But it encompasses so much more than that. There are so many types of legacies that span beyond material goods. On a holistic level, I see the word as meaning a purpose or positive contribution to humanity that goes beyond just your own world. In a metaphor, it’s the ripple effect that starts with your unique contribution. There is the knowledge you have accumulated in your life. Or the work you have accomplished that continues to better the world in some way. Or perhaps it is even just the inspiration you have sparked in others.
Expanding on this idea, a legacy is not something that is stagnant in time but is active and ongoing. It is something that continues to be built upon or to inspire long after we are gone. And often, I don’t think we are even aware of what our legacy will truly be until way later in life. I often think about this when I consider my own. As I work towards building it, I’m actually getting to know what it will be along the way.
“A legacy is not something that is stagnant in time - it is something that is active and ongoing" Carla DiBello
So how do you leave your own legacy? I think the ﬁrst step is to be true to yourself and to listen to your heart in order to truly ﬁnd your passion. It’s when things feel right deep down inside of you that you can harness your true power. Another important factor is to keep one’s ego in check. We may not all leave this earth with our name in lights, and maybe that’s a good thing. It keeps our intentions true.
For me, I have a passion for sharing resources and creating synergy – from that initial spark that comes from connecting people to inspire great things and important change, to bringing beautiful stories to light that may have otherwise gone untold. Following this passion has led me to places and opportunities that I never dreamed possible for myself, and that has allowed me to create my own legacy and make what I truly believe is a difference in this world. The best part is, I feel like I’m only getting started.
But believe it or not, it took me a long time to discover my passion. There was a lot of trial and error. And I had to go down a lot of different paths to ﬁ nd it. But thanks to good family, friends, and some invaluable teachers along the way, I was able to discover it through developing a personal ethos of generosity and love. I really believe that the way to both discover your passion in life as well as to leave behind an invaluable legacy, includes the following: give back whenever you can, spread kindness at every chance you get, and focus on and nurture your relationships. And even though I said it before, it’s worth repeating – listen to what makes you happy. Through your own pursuit of happiness, you will never really know how much you are positively affecting others. And that is at the root of every great legacy.
From the April 2019 issue of Harper's Bazaar Arabia