Retirement Voices – Share your story, too.

I had the opportunity to input to a Retirement Voices book, an idea from Leslie Inman and Roxanne Jones. In their own words,

We’re creating a book entitled Voices from the Other Side…of Retirement. It will be a guide for soon-to-be-retiring women, with advice, lessons learned and stories from women who’ve already left the working world—a powerful and relevant compilation of ‘in-her-own-words’ responses on various aspects of retirement.”

They’ve invited all retired women to share their stories, using an easy questionnaire format (https://retirementvoices.com), where you can answer one of more of their questions.

For me, it was very interesting to think through their questions, approaching my 5-year mark as a retiree (where did the time go?).   They asked questions on topics that I have talked about in many of my blog posts – identity, your spousal relationship in retirement, connections & friendships, managing physical health, what exactly is retirement, and really what do you do everyday.

My biggest aha came from looking at the big picture – 5 years of changes.   I’ve moved from being an expert at working to living a life!  

Looking back I can see I was a critical thinking, highly judgmental, pessimistic workaholic trying to prove my worth, meet (and exceed) expectations, and gain approval. I slept poorly, had no hobbies, had no exercise program, and used work as a means to avoid a negative home environment.

In the past 5 years, there was a lot of change, from learning how to practice positivity, to figuring out what I like to do, to fixing our living situation and downsizing our house. It wasn’t all easy. I tried on a lot of things – some worked and many did not. I actually had 130 new things I tried last year alone!  Yes, made a list.  In the past 5 years, whether successfully or not, I’ve started a (LLC) company, become a certified life coach, wrote a book, moved homes, traveled on a 3-week African Safari, and beat cancer. And, of course, I’m a regular blogger, almost to my 3-year mark.

All the work I did, from self-discovery to trying new things, has lead me to be a more positive, optimistic person who sleeps well, is active (almost) every day, and has a life full of friends and mini-adventures. I need (and like) structure, love both of our homes, and try to have a balance be-ing and do-ing in my life every week. I am a foodie, a planner, and a list-maker. I am trying to not look towards others for validation, to not compare & despair, and to appreciate my own uniqueness.

It was really powerful to look back and see how much I’ve changed, how much I tried (even if it all didn’t work out), and to realize I’m really happy with where I am.

They are continuing to look for retired women (sorry guys, this one is women only) to add their voices, insights, and advice.  Please do look for the questionnaire at https://retirementvoices.com and add your thoughts into the mix! (Deadline is April 30).

Picture Credit: Retirement Voices Header

6 thoughts on “Retirement Voices – Share your story, too.

  1. Pat – this sounds like a great idea. I’m definitely going to complete the questionnaire and include something about it in my blog so my retired friends know about it too. Thanks for letting us know about it.

    Linda

    Liked by 1 person

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