A journey of discovery and self-work

We love to receive recommendations from our members. The start of our engagement happens in many ways, but the best process is by attending one of our workshops to discover what this next season of life may look like. Some companies offer this service for their employees close to retirement. Kim attended such a workshop about 12 months ago.

Here is Kim’s story.

There is moment that comes when you find yourself having to accept the reality that you are unhappy with you job and that retirement is looming largely in the very near distance. And so, it was for me! The decision to retire 2 years before the official retirement age was not an easy one, but the unhappiness that gripped me every morning was written on my face, my health and my family. I took council from friends and family who encouraged me to follow a path that would make me happy. I feared the consequences! Nonetheless, I applied for early retirement and it was given. Enter 50-plus!

I was encouraged by my employer to attend a retirement workshop at a nearby hotel, and along with many other colleagues, attended with some expectation of being inundated with negativity about having failed to financially plan sufficiently for my future. Of course, it was completely true that my personal finances where a real problem (from pure neglect), but I didn’t want to hear that. What I can write is that the presentations given by Lynda Smith of the Refirement Network (50-plus) were outstanding. Lynda lead us carefully through the realities that went beyond the financial and into questions of self-esteem, what now, what will we do with our time, how will we define our lives, how our skills are needed and still have the potential to provide an income, and much more. I checked my lists and began re-evaluating immediately. Was I happy and what would I need to do to shift my life to a position where I could bring happiness to others! How could I find financial security in ‘refiring’ my skills towards a second working life?

I subsequently joined the 50 plus group on-line network and since that time have been supported and found much useful information that has helped me on my unique journey. Everybody has a different journey in retiring, and mine was alone the path of self-work. My journey led me to leave South Africa and relocate to the Netherlands. I down-sized; I down-scaled; I re-structured. I started my own registered business that, as I write, has clients across the West African region who need my skills and help. I have found new purpose and a new vigour. I have a secure income going forward, and my family in South Africa continues to be sustained. I thank Lynda Smith and the 50Plus group so very much for helping me find the blessing and courage to look for a happier and better working future!

Kim has done much work on her own. She has been brave, courageous and has shared with the 50plus-skills members, parts of her journey. We are better together that we are apart. There is a wonderful LEGACY SEASON ahead for each of us. We just need to show up, be honest about where we are and do the work needed to build a new season.