My Retirement Book: Self-doubt crept in.

face to face you are your biggest obstacle

***

 


I was probably a little more forgiving to myself during that first year of retirement, but extra discretionary time often leads to more introspection, or an equivalent of what this Huffington Post piece refers to as ‘sensemaking’.

This article highlights research by the University of Cincinnati’s Heather Vough and colleagues who identified a list of the six most common career-ending narratives, including the three most challenging to a retiree’s self-worth:

  • Being discarded
  • Becoming disillusioned
  • Having an epiphany

I experienced a mix of these three and so my first year, while at times leisurely, was more marked by a juggling act of highs and lows and doubts and revelations.

My challenge, and I would guess that of plenty of other retirees, was to write a new script.

More on that in a later post.

Take the time to read the HuffPost piece. I’m betting there will be a realization or two out there if you identify your retirement narrative according to the article’s list.


Celebrate spontaneous creativity.

thumbs up surrounded by words courage motivation success creativity intelligence confidence

Those can be magical moments.

For me, it happens most often in the kitchen.

Why? Consider all the available tools and ingredients.

And then there’s the love of food.

And spontaneity can also be fed by the time of day or the day of the week.

Sunday afternoons are a time for baking. Sure it’s fun to thumb through a cookbook or launch a Google search for quick and easy coffee cake [a more-than-occasional venture at our house], but it’s just as fun to use the recipe as a foundation for experimentation.

Case in point: Last Saturday morning.

I was all set for our traditional jaunt to the local farmer’s market. But there was L on the  and I didn’t feel like waiting for breakfast.

Someone once proposed that hunger was the mother of invention. I think it was me.

The next thing I knew, amidst a cloud of two kinds of flour, a little corn meal mush, separated eggs, and the other expected ingredients, I had set up a waffle station. Soon after came the colby cheese for one batch, the almonds and dried cranberries for another. [The true miracle, however, was forgetting to add chocolate chips for ‘she who must have chocolate’.]

Soapbox time: We retirees should revel in times like this. Remember…’try new’.

I looked up ‘spontaneous creativity’ and there is a book with that title, but I was drawn instead to this 2013 post from Scott Myers:

That is where relying on our creativity is most important. This implies a kind of trust in our creative instincts and that implies having worked with our creativity enough to learn to trust it.

But in truth if we trust in our creativity, we can surprise ourselves with moments of deep insight to help us perform to our best ability.

Okay, waffles aren’t exactly a deep insight, nor was my dinner tonight, which was supposed to be bangers and mash, but ended up as mustard greens/caramelized onion/sausage/sun dried tomatoes swimming in a chicken broth base, topped with a splash of balsamic vinegar, served over a bed of cavatelli.

But while not profound or life-changing, the spontaneous creativity can’t be denied.

More Tips to Fire Up Your Creativity

dog in chair
Image by M S from Pixabay

More from

201 Ways to Arouse Your Creativity

— Keep a box labeled for each project. Toss everything in the box, and don’t worry about misplacing things or ideas.

from Amy Ng of Pikaland

— Choose just one creative aim for the day. What one creative project can you begin/continue/finish today?

from Dan Goodwin’s Wakeful Ways at A Big Creative Yes

— Think on paper. With a bunch of loose paper, start jotting ideas down. Here are four benefits of writing by hand.

from Jacob Cass at Just Creative Design