Leaving A Legacy

Leaving A Legacy


A popular topic these days is leaving a legacy.  Most of the time, when people talk about a legacy, they talk about what it means for the person that left it behind.

That is, the satisfaction in life in knowing what you created and left behind when you are gone.

But an interesting way to look at a legacy is what it looks like from the other direction.

The work of Dr. Clarence Gonstead was a great example of a legacy.  He built a small chiropractic empire in a rural town in Wisconsin. One he built with his hands, his mind, and his heart.  

As a chiropractor, he was never satisfied, and innovated and innovated until he had created a system for producing the kinds of results that he wanted.

He wanted the limits pushed to what he could accomplish in getting better outcomes for patients.  But he didn’t just talk about it, or dream about it. He invested his life doing just that.

And in doing so, he became not only a tremendously successful doctor, but he and his chiropractic clinic became a chief economic engine of the town.

In the bottom level of Dr. Gonstead's clinic, they put giant maps up with different color pins all over them, each pin a different color to represent the number of travelers from that exact location.

And what you can see, is those pins overlap with the locations of many of the chiropractors still specializing in his work today.

And though he passed away 40 years ago, that small but distinct group of chiropractors specialize in his technique all over the world.

That is the legacy he has left for us today. The smattering of chiropractors all over the world, like the pins on a map, who dedicated themselves to take the time and the steps necessary to use the system he created.  

And those steps that he developed were all crucial in generating the outcomes he wanted, and they did not come about by accident. They came by decades of effort, of trial and error, and evaluating his results for what steps made the real difference.

And that is the real legacy he left behind, the few hundreds of doctors world-wide that use his system every day in order to help patients.  

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