Reflecting On The Past To Move Forward

What are the stories you tell yourself about your life?  Are you listening to an inner voice that says you can’t retire until you reach a certain level or meet a specific career goal? Maybe that voice is holding you back from a much-anticipated retirement.  Ever think that all your career achievements could actually be enough? Maybe it is time to retire? Try reflecting on the past to move forward.

Storytelling is so much more than reciting facts and events. It seems like when you tell the story of your professional life, it’s tempting to recount in great detail about all that you’ve done and what positions you’ve held. Do you even think to include all the life lessons you picked up along the way? 

When you reflect back on your career, recognize the value of what you’ve learned as well as what you’ve done.  Ask yourself what you’ll gain from waiting to reach that last career milestone. While it sounds noteworthy, is it truly something that will make a significant difference?

Think about this: Maybe, just maybe, you’re at the point where you’ve maxed out all that you can take from your career.  Because it’s likely that you already  have enough work experience and life lessons under your belt  to get you to the next stage of life.  You’ve had a successful career and now you’re ready to transition to “what’s next.”

In addition, do you find yourself saying, “I am so ready to retire, but I need to do XYZ first?” If this sounds familiar, really question your intentions. Will realizing one more career goal matter in the grand scheme of things?  Or is it merely a reason to postpone your retirement decision?

Reflecting on the past to move forward, offers the opportunity to acknowledge all the good and bad experiences throughout your work life. Recognize that they have provided you with a lifetime of valuable lessons. Moving forward, this mashup of experience and self-awareness will contribute to a  successful  retirement journey.

So, what’s the story you tell yourself about retiring? Are you delaying it?  Are you trying to achieve a worthwhile goal or are you just postponing a decision?   Seems like there’s a chance you might be ready to retire now.


People of all ages struggle to live a more meaningful life, but the struggle to identify a meaningful retirement is very real. Working with a certified retirement coach can help you frame what’s important to you and how to work towards it in order to find a meaningful life in retirement. Please contact us if you would like to discuss your journey and how we can help.

Recommended Posts

Leave a Comment

Contact Us

We're not around right now. But you can send us an email and we'll get back to you, asap.

Not readable? Change text. captcha txt
make volunteering your pre-retirement plan