Women growing older with grace and gusto

Category Archives: Opportunities

Don’t look forward

CandleI have an old friend, Nancy*, with whom I’ve kept in touch over the years, although not so much recently.

Nancy spent the last ten years of her working life in a job she disliked. She  had a calendar upon which she quite literally ticked off each day taking her closer to retirement at 60. Then she would have the freedom to do what she wanted and enjoy life with her husband, children, grandchildren and friends, spending the pension to which she’d contributed more over the years than she could easily afford.

She made elaborate plans for the travels she would take, the hobbies she would start, the causes she would get involved with. Notebooks full of plans. Not just wishes and dreams, concrete plans, with dates.

Just under a year ago, Nancy hit her sixtieth birthday, packed a few things from her desk into a cardboard box and left work for the last time with a spring in her step and a sigh of relief that now she could begin to enjoy the sweetness of her life and plans.

Today, Nancy is in the last days of her life, having been diagnosed with a particularly virulent cancer two months into retirement.

Why am I telling you this?

Because we all need a reminder from time to time to appreciate what we have while it’s here.

I like to make plans (I wrote recently about doing a year-end personal review), but it’s crazy to rely on them as more than a guide to what we want to do. Otherwise we let today slip through our fingers.

Live in the present, informed by the past and with a flexible eye to the future – what better resolution could there be for the coming new year?

The breezes at dawn have secrets to tell you, don’t go back to sleep


See you soon

I won’t be back here at Pilgrim’s Moon until the beginning of 2013, so I wish you a very happy festive season, and thanks to all my readers for all the wonderful comments and support.

 *Name changed

Review you!

It’s wise to understand that the best of our plans can and will get scuppered by the unforeseen. But making plans is still a good idea. This is an excellent time of year to look both backwards and forwards. Blogger Chris Guillebeau crystallised some of my ideas around reviews and resolutions with his excellent article… Continue Reading

Humour as weapon

The cartoon on the right was sent to a friend of mine (by another woman about our age) in the spirit of “isn’t this hilarious?”. My friend sent it on to me to ask what I thought. My suspicion is that the subtext of her request for my reaction was along the lines of “have… Continue Reading

Why time isn’t money

It’s a famous saying isn’t it? “Time is money!” And certainly time can be charged out in a monetary way. If you were to hire me as your coach, you’d find that my coaching fees are based largely on time. But our lives at their best are too broad and magical to be measured by… Continue Reading

Of recycling, respect and J K Rowling

Read to the end for the opportunity to receive a free gift. I‘ve been thinking about respect and kindness lately, and yes there is a connection with recycling and the famous Harry Potter author. Recycling Some months ago one of my favourite bloggers, Sue at Discombobula, wrote a snappy little post about recycling which set… Continue Reading

Are you wasting your time?

A couple of decades ago, discussions about retirement tended to centre around men. You know the caricatures: the workaholic, authoritative male who got his gold watch then dropped dead because he’d lost his purpose in life; the golfer who loved the idea of spending more and more time on the links then realised he had… Continue Reading

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