I use to think the most important thing I could do as a developer was write code that made a difference; that somehow my code would impact the lives of people in some amazing way. While that's a possibility, it hasn't happened yet and it most likely won't happen in the romantic way I use to think. However, I'm not so sure that's what my legacy will be (or even if that's what I want it to be).
When I started out in this career, my goal was to be the best developer in the room. I wanted people to say "wow Justin, we could not have done this without you." I wanted people to look to me as the expert, the person who had all of the right answers; another romantic notion of this profession.
Over time, though, I began to realize that my real skills went beyond typing semicolons, refactoring to patterns or architecting solutions. I build relationships. I do this through leading teams, working alongside co-workers, engaging with clients, teaching those around me and learning from anyone I can.
My legacy won't be a series of electrons arranged in an order that pushes pixels to an end user. My legacy will be those I've befriended, helped and loved along the way.
I'll still continue to grow my technical skills, adapt to new technologies and keep up with industry trends. But that's just a means to an end. It's a segue into what really matters to me: people.