For more than two decades I lived life at a pace that defied patience and taking one’s time. There was always something to do, right now, with urgency, and no time to wait. Many people equate retirement with a slower pace of life, having time to stop and smell the roses versus zipping by and thinking how pretty as you dash off to your next meeting, appointment, or task to complete. Although my retirement was earlier than normal retirement age and working has not come to an end, I did envision a slower pace of life.
My first few weeks post-retirement were spent living life at a much slower pace and doing much of nothing other than sleeping late, eating mindfully, and contemplating life for what was to follow. I honestly thought life would slow down. I knew I would continue to work; I just thought it would be at a different pace. In the wake of a year already passed I found myself thinking, “Wow! Time flies.” For allthe things I thought I would have accomplished by now, I’m feeling behind schedule with a “To Do” that’s growing instead of shrinking.
I decided to conduct an unofficial poll of some actively engaged leaders about their concept of time and found a common thread. People in leadership rarely have idle time to sit and watch time pass by, for them time flies. There’s always something to get done and crossed off the “To Do” list. Is this a characteristic of good leadership? Sometimes being busy is just being busy, versus productive. As leaders, this is where time management, planning, and goal setting makes a difference.
In the past year, I’ve learned a lot about transitions and the timing thereof. I began my transition journey underestimating what it would really take to make the shift. Rather than becoming frustrated over things not happening as quickly as I’d originally thought I was gently reminded of how time flies. As I look back over the past year I can see where growth has occurred and my plans have been redefined, refined, clearer and more realistic.
Time flies when you are busy. Time flies when you are actively engaged. Time flies when you are in the game of life as a participant and not just a spectator on the sidelines waiting for something to happen. As we grow and mature we become more consciously aware of how quickly time passes.
Living through transition has been a real eye-opener helping to fine-tune and clarify what I really want and how that gets communicated. Social media has become a major conduit for business and professional information sharing beyond connecting socially and I have not kept up. Where sites like LinkedIn used to be the “business” type cyber tool, Facebook, Instagram, and others have quickly become major players in professional circles for business connections. My year in review has challenged me to be more patient and use resilience to not give up or lose the enthusiasm, optimism or commitment that was present at the start.
My greatest take away is that life is a journey with destination points along the way. My next destination is completing the social media presence of Dr. Helen Holton and Associates and our brand. If you are reading this then I know I am getting closer to reaching the goal. Leadership and resilience go hand in hand when you’re actively engaged to impact the lives of others and make a difference. In the process of doing that it’s amazing how time flies.