Jerry and I were sitting in the gazebo, gazing at the lights of the harbor of Christiansted, listening to Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman singing “Time to Say Good Bye.” I was lamenting about feeling challenged to write my next blog.
20 Years Of Writing
You see, between 2003 – 2007 I wrote monthly articles for magazines targeted for small businesses. Every single month. Then, with the development of social media, I wrote business blogs every other week for the next 12+ years. Every other week – like clockwork. For several years, I also wrote articles for many trade publications for a variety of industries. I wrote about leadership, communication, management and human resource practices and corporate culture. While my distribution/readership was not huge, I figured that I reached over 10,000 people each month at its peak. I had something to say … and there were people who wanted to hear what had to say. And if you’re reading this now – Some of you have been reading my magazine articles and blogs for many years. I am truly grateful for your readership, loyalty and support over the years.
At A Crossroads…
In October of 2019, my major client contracts had concluded. As I spent time travelling, I was thinking about the next strategy – I was ready for a new endeavor and focus. But what? I remember joking with my colleagues at a mastermind weekend in December 2019, that maybe I should find a rich sugar daddy and call it quits!
In early 2020, I floundered with what the “next big thing” would be for me. Then BAM! By March, the pandemic made itself known – and all previously booked speaking engagements were cancelled and any hope of new endeavors vanished.
Then, like many people during the pandemic, I found myself at a crossroads, wanting to make major changes in my life, my work and my lifestyle, yet wondered how to navigate this uncharted territory. I prayed and meditated about what was next.
During one meditation, I reflected on the realization that I had done all that I had ever hoped to do – and more. I felt that I had left nothing on the table that I was yearning to do. I was “complete” with my career if that was meant to be.
For 35 years, I had put my corporate career and then my business first. While I had dabbled at dating for many years, I was committed to my work and my leadership roles in professional organizations at the national level, which didn’t leave much room for anyone or anything else. And I was quite content.
Facing the Abyss
Despite realizing I was “complete” with my career, my life’s work and calling, so to speak, it was still daunting. I felt like I was facing an abyss. A vast canyon of the unknown. For decades, I had defined myself as my career and my work. I had the opportunity to play an integral role in revolutionizing two vastly different industries – the small group health insurance industry and the film exhibition industry, before leaving the corporate world to start my own business in 2000.
Upon starting my own business, I created a mission statement that I would “empower people and organizations, to live their dreams, and I would impact millions of people.” Over the next 20 years, I accomplished that through my speaking engagements, consulting, training programs, articles/blogs and books and coaching.
(Not bad for a kid who was told I wasn’t college material and shouldn’t plan on a career!)
Alas, standing at the abyss – Who would I be if I did not have this to support or define me?
Eat, Drink and Be Merry!
I didn’t have children or grandchildren. I had no hobbies… (other than writing ) … I had no sport or passion like many people do.
I did like to eat, drink and travel, though. But really… writing about my life in retirement based on eating, drinking and travelling by myself did not sound appealing.
Unknowingly and ironically, the realization that I was “complete with my career,” and ensuing reflections, as painful as they were, created a huge opening for me.
A Man, A Move And Making Memories
If you’ve been following my blogs… you know the rest of the story at least to date. (If not, you can catch up through the links embedded in this article and the links to previous blogs listed below.)
So here we are, two years later, and, as I wrote in a recent blog, that we designated this year as our year of travel adventures. Although, our current plans are somewhat different than the ones I speculated about when I wrote this several months ago.
So, following our Spain and Portugal trip next week, we will be returning for the month of November to pack away our belongings here. While we hope to have short term renters for the holidays in December, we have a family that has committed to renting our home for six months starting in January.
Let’s Stay Connected
Which brings me back to the song: Time to Say Goodbye. It’s time for me to say goodbye to writing blogs. And I realized I have no interest in starting a You Tube Channel to chronical our adventures. I do think, however, that I will create a special page on Facebook to share pictures and write shorter narratives about our experiences, escapades and discoveries, for anyone who would like to travel along with us.
I will be sending one last blog with information about that before discontinuing sending the regular email blogs.
Time To Say Goodbye
Now… On a semi-final note…
Upon researching the song, “Time to Say Good Bye”, I found this interpretation – which seems perfect for us now:
This song is about two lovers embarking on a journey together as one. The literal interpretation of the song title in Italian is “I will leave with you”. The people they are saying goodbye to is not each other but to their loved ones as they begin a life together in a new world and become one flesh. It’s a great song for a newlywed couple!
So, as I embark on this new journey with Jerry, I say goodbye – to you, and to writing blogs with ideas and information that hopefully, over the years, inspired you or empowered you to live your dreams.
In addition to the blogs that are embedded in this article (the links are underlined and highlighted in blue,) here’s a sampling of other blogs about our journey over the past two years, including some suggestions for how you can live the dream, yourself!