In our culture, there’s a certain vision of what retirement is supposed to look like.
You see it in television commercials: The lovely couple with the silver hair, with polo sweaters over their shoulders, walking hand in hand on the beach, or riding together in a golf cart. Grandparents in sensible clothes with plenty of time to dote on their grandkids.
If you work hard and save a big enough nest egg then by age 65 you can retire and live off your savings, free to live a life of leisure with the few years you have left.
It is a lovely picture from the outside. But the disturbing view from the inside is the unspoken understanding that people who have reached a certain age are expected to gracefully exit stage right and fade into obsolescence. Society doesn’t have much use for them anymore, except perhaps for babysitting. They’ve reached their expiry date.
I took an unconventional approach in my youth, choosing entrepreneurship over a...
Love After Sixty
Recently, I was talking to a friend, also in her 60’s like me, and we were talking about the difficulty with feeling sexy and passionate as we age, and how our changing bodies lead to not feeling sexy enough, and wondering if it’s realistic to expect the kind of passion we had in our youth.
She said something that really struck a chord with me: “Really, if I don't turn me on, who can?”
Society has led us think of love as something that others give us. But what I have come to realize is that it is even more important to love ourselves.
Love yourself first, because you need love as a human being, no matter your age or stage of life. And because this is how we take back our power instead of waiting for others to give us what we need.
Love Thy Selfie
Self-love and self-appreciation have become more acceptable and even fashionable in recent years, but that was definitely not the case when I was growing up.
The message I received was that it...
Do you need a machete to be a trailblazer?
a person who blazes a trail for others to follow through an unsettled country or wilderness; pathfinder.
Can you visualize a trailblazer hacking their way through thick vines and dense undergrowth, seeking a way out of a confusing and often frightening place?
Navigating my way through Womanhood Wonderland these last two decades has many parallels with jungle expeditions. I’ve often felt like that adventurer trying to hack a path to a clearing where I could stop and look around and really know where I am and who I am at the present age and stage of my life.
Unlike Jane in the Tarzan movies, I don’t have a figure-hugging leopard skin wardrobe to wear as I trapeze through life, but many times, I felt like I was barely holding on as I pendulumed between stages of my Baby Boomerness, career, relationships, hormonal, health and physical changes.
As women today, we face so many...
I've been called the Mistress of Transformation & Reinvention. I embrace that title as empowering but also a responsibility.
A woman’s life is fertile with opportunities to change, grow and reinvent!
My own journey has been filled with many tours, detours and ‘Oh My Goddess! I did not see THAT coming!’ experiences.
Full disclosure: Not all my life’s adventures and opportunities started as my idea. In fact, some of my roles happened to me or were forced upon me, and sometimes, I resisted and struggled with the change.
You might think that my story has almost come to an end at age 65, traditionally the age that our generation was expected to retire or begin our descent into obsolescence . . . Vroom Vroom!
I celebrated my ‘un-retirement’ by publishing a book...
A major segment of the population is on the cusp of change and transition. Many of us who strive for this pinnacle are disappointed and unprepared for the reality of the retirement mirage that enticed us. Many of us will live longer than the resources we currently have to sustain the lifestyle vision that kept us plodding forward. Even more of our generation will experience the emptiness of lack of purpose and identity. The Encore Catalyst pulls back the curtain to reveal how we can star in our encores and love the life we design!
We’d worked long and hard to get to this ‘freedom’ stage of life only to be disappointed, sometimes shocked at reality versus expectation. I refer to this as The Retirement MirageTM.
I am Isabel Banerjee, CEO, Entrepreneur, Author, Speaker, Catalyst and example that extra-ordinary things are possible if you believe and you take action!
I learned by trying, doing, failing and starting again. I...