Remember the old expression: “If he knew what was happening, he would roll over in his grave?”

Well, in 1888 a well-known man though not yet deceased, read in the local newspaper his premature obituary. It was meant for his deceased brother, Ludwig. The man’s name was Alfred Nobel, the famous Stockholm chemist.

While bad behavior and foolish acts do not result in people rolling over in their grave, Alfred was shocked and horrified by the impression the newspaper painted of his life.  From the reporter’s perspective, he would be remembered for inventing the destructive power of dynamite. That thought appalled him and led him to radically change the focus of his life.

He decided to dedicate a major portion of his fortune to recognizing and rewarding men and women in the world who promoted peace… Thus was born the Nobel Peace Prize. biography of Alfred Nobel

While you and I will not likely have the benefit of reading a premature obituary of our life’s accomplishments, or what we did that was significant, we can pause now to consider the life story we are leaving behind for others to read.

Allow me to suggest an alternative to a premature obituary.

Why not ask two or three close friends to honestly share “ What do you see as my most significant contribution? What theme (s) most stand out in your mind about my life up to this point in time?”

If you are really brave and courageous you can venture to ask the second question.

What positive change do you see that I need to make in my life that would make a difference?”

If you are open to their observations, you should be awed by those things that are truly positive in your life and humbled by the area(s) that need to change.

Hopefully, like Alfred, you will make the course alterations that will make a meaningful difference in your life.

Afterall, you don’t want to be rolling over in the grave someday if people misunderstand the true focus of your life.  Why not sign-up to receive new post automatically?

Use the form at

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This