When Calling It Quits Is Not An Option
By Frank Brogni, CPC
I have been a self-employed entrepreneur for most of my life. I have never thought of retirement in the traditional sense as an option; however, I am now facing that time.
During a recent presentation by Howard Stone, author of the best selling book, Too Young to Retire, he asked this question, “Which senior person would you most like to emulate?” While there were many interesting people mentioned like Jimmy Carter. Grandma Moses and Colonel Sanders, it struck me as very revealing that most of the participants selected a parent, as I did.
My mother Rose is a role model for people who are really living the “Third Phase” of their life. Mom attends church just about every day, travels out with a companion to deliver communion to shut-ins, and acts as a companion for people needing someone to assist them with light housework, grocery shopping, or just somebody to talk to. As she puts it, “I try to help old people who can’t help themselves.” Mom is a voracious reader and can always be counted on to cook up a bunch of cookies for every holiday. The one thing I have always admired about my mother is her ability to adjust to change in her life. Her two special sayings are, “Things always seem to turn out for the best” and “Do good and forget it!” By the way, mom is 89 years young.
My parents taught me to work hard, be loyal, ethical, and share with the less fortunate. So, with those examples, I have never really thought of retirement as living a life of total leisure.
A few years ago I was part of a seminar that focused on “Living a Life of Purpose.” One of the processes was to create and declare your individual purpose in life. I declared that, “I serve myself by being in service to others.” That declaration has literally changed my life.
Following that event I began a search to find my way of being in service. My search led me to the Coaching industry and my passion for being in service to parents creating their intentional families. As part of my continued learning and membership in the International Coach Federation, I met Howard Stone. His message really resonated with me as I realized that I was transitioning into the “Third Phase” of my life.
Since that time I have spoken with many people who are faced with the same challenges. All of a sudden the children are grown, the career is coming to an end, and we are faced with the same question, “Now that time is not a barrier or money is not a barrier, what will give me the most fulfillment?”
Some ways to answer that question are:
1. Retire the word “retirement” from your vocabulary. You are not in retreat or
withdrawing, you have just begun a new journey that you have prepared your whole life to take.
2. Restructure your priorities. What is most important to you; family and friends, community service, or perhaps the arts?
3. Surround yourself with like minded people who embrace growth and change.
4. Recharge your physical batteries by embracing a personal wellness program.
5. Revisit your childhood dreams. Many have proven that it is never too late to be who you might have been. As the commercial keeps saying, “Just do it!”
These are just a few ways to get started on your personal quest for finding what’s next for you.
One thing is for sure, there is a “What’s next” for most of us. The great thing about that is we get to choose to do anything we want that returns to us the greatest satisfaction. Bon Voyage!