Legacy planning is more than just financial planning – it’s about creating a lasting impact that extends beyond monetary assets. For many women, their financial legacy serves as a testament to their values, beliefs, and the contributions they have made throughout life. Crafting a meaningful legacy plan allows you to ensure your values are preserved, your loved ones are taken care of, and your impact on the world endures for generations to come. In this article, I will share how you can go beyond wealth and create a legacy plan infused with purpose and passion.
First: Estate Plan vs. Legacy Plan
These terms are frequently used interchangeably, but they are distinct from each other. The primary focus of an estate plan is the management and distribution of your financial assets after your passing. A legacy plan, on the other hand, is broader. It is meant to preserve and pass on more than just your financial assets. A legacy plan might include your personal vision of the impact you hope to leave on your family, community, and even the world. This is what I mean when talking about planning “beyond wealth” – and it’s the creation of a legacy plan that we will focus on below.
Reflecting on Your Values and Aspirations
Legacy planning begins with introspection. Take the time to reflect on your core values and aspirations. What causes are close to your heart? How do you want to be remembered by your family, friends, and community? Identifying your purpose and passions will guide you in aligning your legacy plan with what truly matters to you. Don’t rush this process. Take time to really consider what is most meaningful to you before moving forward.
Documenting Your Life Story
Your life story is a significant part of your legacy. Consider documenting your personal journey, experiences, and the life lessons you’ve learned. Sharing your story can provide invaluable wisdom and inspiration to future generations, as well as serve as an important keepsake for your family. You have many options for how you choose to document your life story; written narratives, audio recordings, video messages, or a mix of mediums can all become a cherished part of your legacy.
Empowering Future Generations
Your legacy plan will usually involve financial considerations, especially when it comes to providing for your loved ones. However, it’s important to go beyond the idea of “inheritance” and consider how you can empower future generations to thrive. Think about supporting educational opportunities for family members or people in your community, fostering an entrepreneurial spirit, or establishing family values that emphasize giving back to the community. By empowering your heirs, you can nurture a legacy that extends far beyond monetary wealth.
Philanthropy with Purpose
For many women, philanthropy plays a significant role in legacy planning. If giving back is meaningful to you, you have probably already been engaging in charitable giving aligned with your values and passions. Now, consider how your impact can continue into the future. You might choose to establish a donor-advised fund (DAF) to involve your family in making decisions and create a sense of shared purpose. You can choose causes that promote gender equality, education, healthcare, environmental sustainability, or anything that is important to you. Leaving a philanthropic legacy can bring deep fulfillment on a personal level, as well as positive change to your family, community, and the world.
Legacy planning can be complex, involving legal, financial, and tax considerations. Engaging with a team of professional advisors, including financial planners, estate attorneys, and tax experts, can ensure your legacy plan is executed efficiently and in accordance with your wishes. Collaborating with these experts will allow you to optimize your legacy, both financially and emotionally.
Are You Ready to Move Forward with Your Legacy Plan?
Legacy planning is a powerful way to leave a meaningful and enduring impact on the world and those you love. Beyond the accumulation of wealth, crafting a legacy plan infused with purpose and passion allows you to align your values with your financial decisions. By reflecting on your values, documenting your life story, empowering future generations, engaging in philanthropy, and incorporating sustainability, you can create a legacy that truly embodies who you are and what you stand for.
At Flourish Wealth Management, we work primarily with female clients to establish legacy plans that give them financial peace of mind as well as personal fulfillment. Our skilled team can help you identify your core values and determine strategies for incorporating them into your broader financial plans. If you’d like to schedule a complimentary, one-on-one conversation, please reach out today.