I work with a lot of people in transition. Most of them are either starting new businesses, changing careers or retiring.
It’s the clients that are retiring that I worry about the most because some of them have had very fulfilling careers and really don’t know what they are going to do in the next chapter of their lives.
To truly invest in yourself you have to have things to look forward to whether it’s your next vacation, or taking up a new hobby, or creating a business out of a hobby you already have, or getting involved in some new cause you care about. All these things have one thing in common: they are new experiences.
Many people try to use stuff as their “thing to look forward to.” We are a nation of people who fill storage lockers with stuff that won’t fit into our homes and we get the privilege of paying for that.
Yet stuff, no matter how glitzy or fun, gets old after awhile. Sometimes a day, sometimes a month, sometimes longer, but no matter what the stuff is, it’s still just stuff after awhile.
But experiences are new and exciting, they stay with us. Some of my favorite memories as a child were the family vacations we took. We saw new things, met new people, had experiences we never would have had at home. These memories are as fresh as if they’d happened yesterday in spite of happening four and five decades ago.
And the trips my husband and I have taken always bring back memories of some minor, almost disaster and a whole lot of laughter and fun.
But traveling isn’t for everyone. Perhaps you’d rather get involved volunteering in your community for a cause you can get excited about, or take up a new sport, or hobby, or turn that hobby into a small business selling what you make to others. Or maybe you’d like to work with children in some way, giving them the benefit of your wisdom and experience.
A colleague of mine is breaking running records competing in senior track meets all over the country. He looks forward to these events and posts great pictures on Facebook of the medals he has won. He didn’t have time for anything like this when he was working full time. But, again, it’s the experience he’s got to look forward to. And from the pictures it looks to me like he’s in the best shape of his life.
I’m very blessed to be living in a community that is comprised of a large number of retired people who are having the time of their lives. Some have hobbies ranging from restoring old cars to creating artwork to volunteering at the library. And one woman I met, who has to be at least 75, is giving dance lessons out of her home one day a week and loving it. She was a dance instructor for decades and has no plans to quit yet.
I encourage you, if you feel like you don’t have enough things to look forward to, to start making some plans. You’re never too old to find things you feel passionate about which is, from my view, what keeps people excited about life, no matter what their age.
And if you or someone you know needs help in this area, I’m just an email away. (firstname.lastname@example.org) I offer a complimentary coaching/mentoring session so you can find out for yourself just how valuable having a coach or mentor is, helping you brainstorm ideas, helping you find long forgotten passions that can be renewed, helping you uncover things that truly would light up your life.
If you’re anything like me, sometimes you just can’t see the forest for the trees. Having someone else help you gain some perspective who knows just how great life can be can make all the difference in the world in your own life.
So if I can help, let me know. For someone who feels stuck or is struggling, this can mean the difference between surviving and truly enjoying every moment that life has to offer.
And don’t forget — investing in yourself is the most important investment you will ever make. And you’re worth it!!