How to Save Your Life

As you reflect on your life, what moments or thoughts would you like to save? What about some of your family members? Wouldn’t you like to record their opinions on their lives?

Open-ending questions about people’s life experiences yield surprising results. Use these questions to record your thoughts, or start a conversation with a relative. When possible, record the interview on audio or video.

Questions to Save Your Life

  • What everyday conveniences do we have today that were not available when you were a child/teenager/adult?

  • What were the significant issues and worries that faced you then? How were they different than today’s problems?

  • What world events affected your life the most? Why?

  • Were you as aware of the events in the world as we are today?

  • What were your major concerns for the future?

  • What were your dreams or expectations for the future? Which came to pass? Which didn’t?

  • What events in your life, if any, caused you to change your expectations or goals? Were the changes for the better or do you have regrets?

  • Do you think it was easier then or now to reach the goals we set for ourselves? Why?

  • If you could go back in time, knowing what you know now, what, if anything would you change? Why?

  • What was the most rewarding time or event in your life? Why?

  • What piece of advice would you like to give me?

Go Deeper

If you’re interested in asking even more questions, download my oral history kits:

300+ Personal History Questions Workbook

Family History for Mothers Kit

Family History for Fathers Kit

40 Family Recipe Questions

30 Travel Memory Questions

40 Family Hanukkah Questions

40 Family Christmas Questions

50+ Halloween Memory Questions

What questions would you add to this list? I’d love to hear them in the comments below.

To learn the preservation secrets used by libraries, archives, and museums to protect their priceless materials (that you can also use for your family heritage items) read my book: 

Ready to get started creating your family archives? Here are some of my favorite products:

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