A One Year Anniversary and a New Life

Two Roads Diverged

Two Roads Diverged

In a few days it will be one year since I exited the formal work environment. It’s been a year of reflection, learning, activity and renewal; and the beginning of a new life.

I’m healthier than I’ve been in several years. I get more exercise but for the time when I was a young person active in various sports.

I wake each morning looking forward genuinely excited about the new day. Sometimes I even find myself whistling! That’s a surprise to me.

When I considered making this move, I wasn’t sure how I would use my time. A  job provides its own structure and time commitment. Being out of that environment means you’re responsible for your own use of time, setting priorities, and making engagements.

It’s a self-directed life in which you set your own agenda.

I’ve been pleasantly surprised to discover that on most days there’s not enough time to do all that I want to do. Any fears of boredom or ennui quickly faded.

I’ve taken a hiatus from writing in favor of daily hikes of 3 or 4 miles, concentrating on photography, and being outside in nature.

I’ve met lots of interesting people and had many enjoyable conversations. I’ve discovered new interests and activities.

I also have time to read books and articles that interest me, no matter how unrelated the topics, but not one book on organizational dynamics, leadership, or management.

After positions in which I traveled internationally, most recently about 40% of the time, I haven’t gotten on an airplane but once this past year, and that was to deliver three addresses to a group in Dallas about communicating faith in the 21st Century.

Until Sharon grew tired of hearing it, I’d often say, as a plane flew overhead, “Thank God I’m not on that.”

All of this leads me to reflections on what I’ve discovered as I’ve stepped out of the institution and into the so-called “real world.”

I’ll be writing about this in the next few posts and I’ll welcome hearing from you about your perspectives on life in this rapidly changing, sometimes harsh and difficult world.

But that’s not the whole picture. I’m more interested in how we celebrate life, find the sacred in our daily activities, and discover hope and meaning in a world of great blessing.

So I hope you’ll stop by and engage in that conversation.

6 Responses to “A One Year Anniversary and a New Life”

  1. Kay March 2, 2016 at 7:30 am #

    He’s baaaaaack! I thoroughly enjoy your photography and look forward to reading your written word.

  2. Steve Overall March 2, 2016 at 9:36 am #

    Thanks. I appreciate your reflections; I have also been doing some spiritual musings about life after retirement. It has been refreshing to discover that my sense of personal worth has not been totally dependent upon ‘what I did’, as you say in “real world”, but more on who I was ‘becoming’, each day.
    My spouse of 48+ years, has been a tremendous friend who has helped to keep me grounded when I some times lose sight of how God is still at work in my life. Her love and graceful way to urge me to stay healthy…attend cardio and yoga classes at the ‘Y’ as well as getting outdoors for walks and bike rides is becoming a new way to give thanks to God for all that has been and to say ‘yes’ to all that awaits me in the future.
    Looking forward to our mini-reunion, in a couple of weeks. Blessings to you and Sharon.

    • Larry Hollon March 2, 2016 at 11:01 am #

      I like your through about who we are becoming each day. That’s resonates with what I’ve been experiencing as well. And I agree with your remarks about how Lynne has aided in this change for you. Sharon has been a strong support without whom it would have been a much more difficult and painful transition. And she’s the best bird spotter I’ve ever seen. Looking forward to seeing you two again.

  3. Tom Clemow March 2, 2016 at 9:46 am #

    I look forward to your posts, but, if I may, a word of caution. Pace yourself. Don’t give up those walks and photos. Don’t let the writing impose a new artificial structure which dictates to you its own sense of purpose. You tell us more through the lense of your camera than all the words you can write; and as I remember you are capable of writing quite a few (lol). But when you do write you challenge our tendency to lazy thinking and easy compromise with our particular status quo. The conversation that engenders is always a gift, and has always nurtured the community which has surrounded you, whether here or abroad. So maybe you should ignore my advice and just write with abandon

    • Larry Hollon March 2, 2016 at 10:56 am #

      Ha. In the first half of your note, you read my mind. I’m wondering how I write and also get out and do photography in the morning. But, in the second half you also remind me that I can get a bit loquacious, and that’s not so good. I’m chuckling, and delighted at your response. Thank you. 🙂

  4. Greg March 2, 2016 at 11:42 am #

    More importantly, how can we bring that joy of life back into the world of work? We are killing ourselves at the alter of productivity.

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