What’s Your Legacy
September 19, 2021
The inventor of dynamite woke up to read his own obituary in the newspaper. At the time of this report, the man referred in the news was extremely wealthy. He owned over 100 factories that made explosives and armaments. The obituary was scathing, describing him as a “merchant of death” who had grown rich by creating new ways to mutilate and kill.
While the newspaper was accurate in describing him, the report in itself was a mistake . In reality, it was actually his brother Ludwig who had died from a heart attack and not him. While there is no historical first-hand record of how reading the news of his own death impacted him, later events indicate that this news certainly seemed to have changed the way he lived his life.
He decided to commit 95% of his wealth and estate to institute a foundation that would award prizes to people who would make the most significant contributions to humanity through their work in the fields of Medicine, Chemistry, Medicine, Literature, and Economics.
This is the story of Alfred Nobel.
Faced with the false news of his own demise and how people viewed him, Alfred Nobel chose to change his life story. And for that reason, his legacy lives on to this day and will continue long into the future.
This quirky story can inspire us to examine the lives we lead and ask ourselves- What is the legacy I wish to leave behind? How would I like to be remembered?