Hello SOTGC community,
Imagine you are retiring today.
What words, phrases, or verses describe your work? Not those silly verses you sang in the shower this morning. Yes. We all heard you.
I’m talking about the words that define who you are and the work you are doing in this world.
My mom retired recently along with a handful of other rock stars in the autism therapy world. Like a swarm of bees to the honey hive, her colleagues went to her to breathe life, vibrancy, and support into their world.
It was clear she stamped the hearts of these people and made an impact. At this retirement shindig, the queen bee of the work tribe said something about each retiree by sharing words the group of colleagues had come up with to describe each retiree.
It wasn’t the nice/sweet/caring-ish type of words that were engraved on their plaques. Rip up those cheese ball hallmark words you have swirling in your brain box. The words that got the standing ovations, tears flowing, and hearts open were …
– stands up for what she believes
– speaks her mind
– knows her value and delivers it without hesitation
If you go home each day or most days from work and can say you did these three things, you know you are doing meaningful work, doing it authentically, and making a difference.
My heart perked up when I heard these deep, strong descriptions of women who had worked passionately with drive and dedication to a dream. I realize how much time we all spend trying to play it safe, be agreeable, and nod our heads because it’s the easiest thing to do even though we are burning inside to say no, uncork our true selves, and speak what’s on our heart.
It’s the people that stand so tall, so strong, and unwavering in their truth that are the echoes in the souls of others. They are a legacy, a lasting inspiration. This is what people remember at the end of a 35-plus-year career.
So let’s revisit whom we are showing up as when we hit the field each day. How will you be remembered when your retirement day hatches?
I hope you stand for something. I hope you ruffle feathers for all the right reasons. I hope you always have integrity with your truth when the tsunami of resistance meets you face to face. I hope that wherever you leave your footsteps, you create a breed of value like no one else could ever dream of replicating.
And when I say, “I hope you …” I’m speaking to myself just as loudly.
For some of you, retirement might be right around the yellow brick road, for others it’s galaxies away. Wherever you stand, live like it’s your retirement day and own the beautiful strength that is yours to give to the world.