No matter your age, it can be a focusing and illuminating activity to try to write your own obituary. It gives you perspective and can help you understand what’s truly important to you.
Sample instructions: Write your own 600-word obituary in the style of your favorite newspaper.
In a recent interview in the New York Times Magazine, a guy named Jonathan Butler explained that he started Brooklyn Flea, one of the most popular markets in the area, because while: ““I am ambitious about making a lot of money, but none of that stuff passed the obituary test. I didn’t want it to read that I had been a vice president of Merrill Lynch for 40 years.”
To help figure out what to do with your life, work back from your death.
Build your career on the kind of life you want to have built. Don’t build your life around the kind of career you want to get.
500-700 words long
Your full name and nickname included in the first sentence
Your time and place of death in the first paragraph
Life (Ex:: date/place of birth, parents and sibling names, education, marriage, awards, employment hobbies, achievements, disappointments, any unusual characteristics)
Family (Ex: survived by, predeceased by)
Include specific details