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HANGING THEM UP

What does that mean? I'm retiring? I'm quitting? I'm changing? I'm moving on? And from what? Your job? A relationship? A hobby? Graduating school? Or maybe a sport?

There does come a time in everything we do when it is time to "hang them up" or "pack it in". And when that day comes (and it does) it can be extremely sad. Maybe even devastating. Perhaps it is a day of mixed emotions. It is time to retire, let go or quit so in one perspective it is happy yet the change will be a loss. Regardless, it will be a period of difference and during that period you will experience grief. Remind yourself of the five stages of grief. Accept the fact you will experience all five:

1. Denial,

2. Anger,

3. Depression,

4. Bargaining and

5. Acceptance

What are we afraid of in the "hanging it up" concept? That we will be forgotten? That we will realize everything will go on without us? That we actually were just a number? Maybe all of the above. Of course in that concept lies the common thread of fear. Remember fear is a part of ego. Let it go. There is no room for fear (ego). We all will have to let something go at some time and when that day comes know that it will be ok, and most importantly you are starting a new journey.

I experienced my first "hanging them up" period of time several years when I went into retirement. Well semi-retirement which I affectionately called "unplugged". It didn't work for me. The retirement part. It was a major change and it was the most important transition for me as I learned the critical element of this period of time was really a new beginning. You see the last stage of grief and the aftermath of any hanging them up period is the new beginning otherwise known as acceptance. That exciting period of time when we celebrate our loss and realize the new start we have in front of us.

Life is all about choice. Some choices are inevitable. When the day comes it simply creates a new opportunity to make new choices. Whether you are changing jobs, retiring from a long standing career or hanging up the skates from your hockey career, know that the new choices ahead will be just as exciting.

The real power is in everyday choices. Make some great ones today!

"You can retire from a job, but don't ever retire from making extremely meaningful contributions in life".

Stephen Covey

© 2013-2014 R. Todd Millar. All rights reserved.

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