Retire to Do What You Love

This afternoon I had a personal meeting with Thelma Mariano, Life and Retirement Coach.

When I first started my blog nine months ago I was newly retired and asked the question: what do I want to do for the rest of my life? The answer to this question is becoming clearer but meeting with Thelma helped me to re-evaluate my goals at this stage of my life.

Our meeting started off with her stating that when you retire you have to build a new life for yourself – one where you’re going to fulfill your needs and pursue your dreams.

“Now that we’re living longer, if you retire at sixty it’s reasonable to expect a good twenty or thirty years ahead,” she said. “My ninety-one year old father still plays golf and has a healthy social life. Because we have become more aware of our health and are taking care of our bodies, we can be active well into our eighties or beyond.”

We baby boomers may be ready to retire from our regular jobs but certainly not from life. And we’re never too old to go after our dreams.

Ms Mariano’s tools are based on twenty years of research and coaching experience. One such tool which she gave me as “homework” is “Your Life Values” questionnaire. This is in two parts. The first part requires you to identify what you still want to experience and express. Forget those values which you’ve already integrated.

Along with a suggested list of values came two pages of notes. For example:

* Our Life Values are powerful, as they actually determine what we create in our lives and show us the areas that need change. They are also what motivates us and what ultimately gives us satisfaction.

The exercise also requires you to prioritize your list:

* Changing the priorities of your values affects the way you think, feel and behave in every area of your life. Someone who puts Challenge/Risk at the top of her list will go after very different opportunities than someone who puts Security as #1.

I relied on my gut feeling to prioritize my values and define how I will achieve them. So here’s my list:

1. Tranquility
2. Being recognized for my writing
3. Having a loving relationship with a man
4. Deepening my relationship with my daughter
5. Meeting more writers
6. Going to Barcelona
7. Having my own website as a writer
8. Spiritual growth
9. Going to interesting writers conferences
10. Attending a yoga workshop in Hawaii

The only reason I put spiritual growth at the number 8 position was because I had previously done Mariano’s “Slice of Life Satisfaction Chart” and spirituality had come out very strong so I didn’t feel that I needed to prioritize that aspect. I hemmed and hawed at whether a loving relationship with a man was more important than my writing career.

Then I thought of a TaroGold. quote which I received in my inbox a few weeks ago: “If you sacrifice your growth and talent for love you will not find happiness. True happiness is obtained only by fully realizing your potential. Love should be a force that helps you expand your life and bring forth your innate potential with fresh and dynamic vitality.” In the midst of writing this I felt caught in a chicken and egg situation. So I guess my number 2 and 3 values go hand-in-hand.

But wait! The test is still not finished. Now that I’ve identified my values I need to define them and set goals to achieve them. Yikes!

You can use some of Thelma’s tools which she’s posted on her site.

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About Carol Balawyder

Hi- I am the author of Mourning Has Broken-A Memoir on Grief, Getting To Mr. Right, Missi's Dating Adventures and Suzy Paradise. You can follow me on my web site www.carolbalawyder.com I look forward to reading your comments and getting to know what you are involved in.
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One Response to Retire to Do What You Love

  1. Wonderful post. I retired 18 mos ago and was very lost, until now. I often thought of finding a life coach, but my ego poo poohed the idea. My mind told me I was strong enough to go it alone. Turns out I was wrong. We all need a little help now and then. Good for you for examining your life and finding a path for your future.

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