I do some “navel-gazing” once in a while. I learned a long time ago that reality checks are a critical part of making sure you’re not losing control of your sanity.
Recently, I’ve started a semi-habit of tallying up everything that I’ve done on a particular Sunday. While it’s probably annoying to many folks who either read my ramblings on purpose or accidentally come across them, I find it encouraging to see that I can still successfully complete a gazillion “to-dos” without breaking a sweat.
Now that I’m zeroing in on that mythical thing called “retirement,” I’m starting to think about that new phase of my life and how I’m either going to adjust…or not.
I’ve been at Curry College now for closing in on 14 years, and I taught for a couple of years before this at several other colleges in the Boston area. This was after having worked as a public relations professional for more than 35 years. I know I wasn’t wired to sit around and do little or nothing, so this truly is an important step in the process.
There are two distinct parts to this planning.
First, my wife Margaret and I have made eight permanent-ish moves in the course of our married life and at least a half-dozen temporary moves. And every single one of those moves has had us out-and-about exploring new neighborhoods and becoming as familiar as possible with our surroundings.
Second, as soon as possible after making a move, I find something work-related to do. Granted, in these earlier times, it was totally “real work,” earn-a-living stuff, including internship assignments and permanent jobs.
The focus now is going to be on continuing my involvement both in the education of future public relations practitioners…part-time teaching at a college or university…and in the activities of a local PRSA chapter. (Fair warning to my future Tampa-area PRSA colleagues…I’m on my way!)
I’ve seen others segue into this retirement thing and basically shut down all that they did in their earlier years. They seem to be content to putter around the house and basically (in my mind) waste time.
Nunh-unh. Ain’t gonna happen that way for me.
I’m convinced that the secret to long and productive living is to keep your mind and your body in a constant state of activity. There’s sooo much that I need to learn (still trying to figure out how Snapchat works, for example) and…I think…so much that I can offer to young up-and-coming PR pros.
So here’s to Chapter Whatever in my life’s story. Starting all over again for the bazillionth time in a new location. Making new friends. Learning new things. Sharing my knowledge, experience, and passion for public relations with others.
It’s what I do.