Not a day should go by that you don’t fight for your legacy. It is easy to give up hope when your husband or loved one is in prison. Every day feels like a battle against hopelessness and longing for the day he is released. It takes everything you have to face your current situation and manage all the pressures that attack you daily. You are exhausted and overwhelmed by the never-ending list of things that need your attention. Finding the time and energy to fight for your legacy now seems impossible. I am here to tell you that it is not impossible. Still, it is imperative that you fight for your family’s legacy every day.
This most painful chapter of your life is the perfect time to start the war for your legacy.
You cannot wait until this season has passed. It will be too late; your marriage will crumble, your opportunities will diminish, your children will suffer needlessly, and you will accept your circumstance as your life sentence. You miss out on all that could be because you are too focused on all that is. It is time to look up and see the potential for your family and then work to make that potential your family’s reality. Know this: nobody is going to do it for you.
You must encourage yourself that there is hope for a better future and work toward setting and meeting your goals. The restlessness you feel in your heart is because you are not living up to your potential. You will never experience joy as long as you stay in survival mode. Do you want success? You need to learn to thrive amidst the challenges you must face. Success is not accumulated by making money; it comes from creating a powerful legacy.
Before you can build a legacy, you need to know what legacy means.
Legacy is something handed down by a predecessor. That means that a legacy can be something positive or negative. So, you are building a legacy to pass on to your future generations. You need to ask yourself, “What kind of a legacy am I leaving behind?” Is it one you are proud of or one you are ashamed of passing down? Your children and community will remember you for how you lived your life.
Since your legacy will outlive you by generations, it is worth the fight to build a legacy you can be proud to pass on. I know it is difficult to find the will to invest in your future when you barely have enough energy to take care of the pressures you are facing today. However, you must find a way to catch your breath and begin living for more than this moment in time.
"While your partner is in prison, you can work together on building something you want for your lives and something worthy of passing on to your children."
It takes intentional investments of time and strategic decision-making, but the reward will significantly outweigh your efforts. As you consider what legacy you are creating, the first battle you will need to fight is in your mind. Your thoughts, your fears, and your opinions will resist change. They will stubbornly rebel against any extra effort and shove hope and dreams to the ground if you let them. Don’t let your mind control you. You own your mind! Take it captive and begin the hard work of building a legacy that your family will be proud to pass down.
Your desire for a better legacy is stirring, but you might not know how to fight for your legacy. I can help get you started. Here are some tips that worked for me and I know will help you create your legacy and fight to win:
- Take 15 minutes every day. Find quiet time to reflect on what you are building. If you don’t keep your legacy in the front of your mind every day, it is easy to lose sight of what you are getting up every day to fight for. I found my time late in the evening before I went to bed. Spend those minutes thinking about what you are trying to build and what you accomplished in the past 24 hours.
- Set goals. After you have practiced number one for five days, you will begin to see what you want to accomplish with your life. Write these goals down with a projected completion date by the concrete plans (for example- clean out the clutter in my bedroom by Saturday). Keep abstract goals on your list so you can use those as a litmus test as you make changes in your life (for example- make my home more peaceful and inviting)
- Find new friends. If all of your friends were friends in your chaos, you need to add to your pool of friends. I often say, “show me your friends and I will show you your future”. This is the truth. If you want something different, you must surround yourself with like-minded people. You don’t have to stop being friends with your current friends; spend less time with them as you build your new legacy.
- Dream big. Do not limit yourself to what you think you can accomplish right now. Work hard and lay the foundation that will support your big dreams! I know this can be intimidating, but it is essential! While I was still on welfare, barely making it, I began to dream of buying our home someday. At first, my mind rejected this dream as being impossible. I even chided myself for thinking I could achieve. I fought my mind battle and began preparing to make this dream come true.
- Put action around your dreams. Now, it is time to DO something to get you closer to your vision. I mean that you must do something every day to bring you closer to your dreams. Once I stopped the sabotage of my mind, I began calling banks to find out what the process was to buy a house. I asked dozens of questions so I could put a plan into action. I did not know where to start until I started taking action!
Fight for your legacy every day.
Do not give up. You are worth the effort, and your family depends on you to create a powerful legacy so they can dream again and live up to their potential because of the precedent you set.
I am rooting for you!