For singles or people without children, what will your footprint be?
At Evolution Strategies, we really enjoy talking about legacy with clients. Legacy is all about the impact you want to have on lives when you’re gone. It’s about your footprint and passing along more than just your wealth. I really enjoy this topic because I often find it helps people connect with peace of mind and a sense of satisfaction of knowing the difference they’ll be making. We act to educate, encourage people to dream big, and step in as an accountability partner to make sure things aren’t left undone.
Passions & Legacy
When most people with children are asked about their legacy, they speak about their children and the impact they will have on the world. For people who don’t have children and so without this default, we really enjoy talking through your unique opportunity to have deep discussions about what your values are and who you want to impact. We love hearing about what gives your life passion. The world is an ever-expanding place and there is a much wider variety of opportunities to have a positive impact than ever before. For some, they may want to honour their traditional family such as the legacy of their parents or nieces and nephews. Many have a “family of choice,” unofficial nieces and nephews who they love like they were their own. We want to help you identify what impact you want to have and maximize it!
Either way, there is an expectation when you pass that those you have chosen will carry your wishes forward and be your story-teller, but it is not always so.
How to make your impact
Ultimately, I think we’re all concerned about wanting our time on earth to have mattered. For those without children there is such a chance to explicitly focus in on the activities and causes that really matter. It’s a natural thought as we move later in life and have perhaps more money than energy to think about the ways we can have more impact.
When it comes to naming people or charities as in wills, trusts or as beneficiaries of insurance policies, it’s not so much about the paperwork, but about your sense of satisfaction in your life’s work. It’s also important to let those organizations or people know of your intentions. That can give you an added sense of purpose and passion tied to them beyond the wealth you’re leaving.
What we do know for sure, is these problems do not go away if you simply ignore them. Try not to put this off! Remember that you can change your mind. Share your intentions but note that this can change. If you are setting up a trust, you can also think about naming particular causes versus individual charities and having the trustee making the donations. Whether you use a will or a trust, you can also include a Letter of Wishes that lets you talk in your own words about your intentions.
Cost versus impact
Some people also worry about the cost of getting these documents prepared, but once you consider the impact that this investment could have it is money well spent. Unfortunately, doing nothing, is in fact doing something. Think about the implications if you don’t have these documents in place. If you don’t go through with this exercise, how will anyone know what your wishes were? And top of that, how will they have capacity to carry them out?
We would love to connect with you to start to plan your legacy together and to pass along more than just your wealth. Let’s talk. Click here to book a complimentary assessment call.
This article also appeared at EthicalPlan.