Legacy Letters

Tell Your Life Story With a Beautifully Crafted Legacy Letter!

What is a Legacy Letter?

Letter writing is becoming a lost art form, but it doesn’t have to be. Writing your Legacy Letter helps revive this old art form while strengthening ties between the generations. A Legacy Letter is a written document of your values, experiences, and hard-earned life lessons. The letter can also express hopes, blessings, explanations, forgiveness, and gratitude. Leah Dobkin has created a process for creating a Legacy Letter, which is fun, easy, positive and healing. Creating your Legacy Letter is a great opportunity for self-examination which is likely to result in psychological and spiritual growth and improved physical health.

A Legacy Letter is drawn from a tradition dating back to biblical times and is now reemerging as an important therapeutic tool to strengthen the ties between generations. Interest in producing one’s life story, via a Legacy Letter, is burgeoning among a broad cross-section of the public. Legacy Letters can be written at significant junctures in people’s lives such as weddings and births. However, those of us with a little gray and a lot of experience, are more apt to script them. They are living documents. You can add new content at anytime during your life. Every letter is as unique as you are.

Creating a Legacy Letter is a profound personal exercise. It can be equally profound and helpful to those fortunate enough to be on the receiving end. It is a win-win for all involved. Putting pen to paper about the intangible assets of your life is a way a person can preserve who they are and what matters most to them. It is a way to be remembered and understood while making a significant impact on loved ones. These letters become a touchstone to the past and an anchor for the future for them and you: a most cherished keepsake.

What is the Process for Creating a Legacy Letter?

For many people editing is much easier than writing. Legacy Letter writing services entails confidential recorded face to face or phone interviews. You are asked thought-provoking questions that help you share your family stories and life experiences and transfer information which is too important to be lost… giving you peace of mind that nothing is left unsaid to your loved ones.

Leah Dobkin writes the first draft of a letter based on your recorded and transcribed responses. After you review the draft and make any changes she will incorporate the changes and print the letter onto beautiful archival acid-free paper or into a book.

Each letter is as unique as you are. Some clients include precious photographs, quotes, or even favorite family recipes. This letter or book will then be passed down and enjoyed by family members for years to come.

As you explore your life, it becomes a story-rich odyssey filled with valuable insights and life lessons – a road map for your children and grandchildren.

Writing and sharing your Legacy Letter will probably be one of the most deeply satisfying and enriching acts you will ever have  done.

Ten Basic Steps for Creating Your Legacy Letter

  1. An initial consultation.
  2. In consultation with Leah during the initial consultation or in a number of in-person or telephone discussions you select the type of Legacy Letter and finalize the number of interviews, the length of the letter, who is receiving the letter, and when they will receive  it.
  3. We sign a Legacy Letter Agreement which sets out the details agreed to and establishes the price.
  4. Leah conducts the necessary interviews.
  5. The interview(s) are transcribed.
  6. Leah edits the interview material and creates a draft Legacy Letter or book.
  7. You review and edit the draft.
  8. Leah will include any precious photographs of your family, home, and other memorabilia you wish to appear in the book or letter.
  9. Leah arranges to have the final version printed onto beautiful archival acid-free paper or into a bound book.
  10. Client gives letter or book to a loved one(s)  and feels a deep sense of satisfaction.

Surprising Health Benefits Linked to Recalling and Writing Your Story

Reminiscing, sometimes referred to as life review, is a key ingredient to writing or telling your life story, memoir or autobiography.  Reminiscing is also a key ingredient to writing your Legacy Letter.  Why is reminiscing and writing so important to a healthier life?

Reminiscing helps people enjoy life more and has profound physical, psychological, social and spiritual health.  Studies* indicate that this activity can increase self-esteem, raise life satisfaction, improve cognitive functioning, and decrease levels of depression and anxiety.  Studies* have also shown that the simple act of writing lowers blood pressure, arthritis pain, asthma symptoms, and boosts the immune system.  Reminiscing is an important and necessary developmental process we all can profit from going through.

The process can be cathartic by helping people better understand their feelings and submerged memories. Often people let go of pain, anger, resentment and discover peace within themselves and towards others.  The process for creating a Legacy Letter provides clarity, insight and a deeper understanding of your life and your family by examining the important events of your life, the choices you made, and your struggles and triumphs.

Enable your personal wisdom to live on for the ages.

*Sources:
Emotional and physical health benefits of expressive writing,
Karen A. Baikie and Kay Wilhelm. Advances in Psychiatric Treatment, 2005 11: 338-346.

http://apt.rcpsych.org/content/11/5/338.full

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2562588/

http://www.healio.com/geriatric-medicine/journals/jgn/%7Bf9312f6c-2ee4-4470-be57-454eb249ebe7%7D/improving-depressive-symptoms-in-community-dwelling-older-adults-a-psychosocial-intervention-using-life-review-and-writing

http://www.rightathome.net/foxvalley/blog/elderly-patients-benefit-from-reminiscing/

Contact Us

Phone: (414) 238-1577
Email: leah@legacyletter.org

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