Why should I write an autobiography of my life?

Grandfather and Granddaughter

Why should I write an autobiography of my life?

You may ask yourself, “Why should I write an autobiography of my life?”

You may feel as though that’s something only a very important person or someone who’s led a very exciting life should do. Maybe a President, Movie Star, or Famous Athlete for example.  You may feel that you have led a very “normal” life and no one would be interested to know about the details of it.  You would, in most cases, be quite wrong.

The generations that follow you are very interested in the details of your life.

Documenting your life stories and memories is a precious gift to give to your children, grandchildren and beyond.   Did you know that children who know stories about relatives who came before them show higher levels of emotional well-being, according to Emory University researchers.

The research, by Emory psychologists Robyn Fivush and Marshall Duke, and former Emory graduate student Jennifer Bohanek, was published in Emory’s online Journal of Family Life.

“Family stories provide a sense of identity through time, and help children understand who they are in the world,” the researchers said in the paper “Do You Know? The power of family history in adolescent identity and well-being”.

Teens who knew more stories about their extended family showed “higher levels of emotional well-being, and also higher levels of identity achievement, even when controlling for general level of family functioning,” the study found.

“There is something powerful about actually knowing these stories,” the study said.

Read more about this study at: http://shared.web.emory.edu/emory

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