My dad died days before my 50th birthday. Reflection was forced upon me. Every birthday that ends in a zero provides an opportunity to re-assess. My recent post about “Transition and Mourning” hit more than one nerve.

Many of us keep doing what we’re doing, not because we think it is best, but because we know that rut. Life will bring us costs and surprises that force us to change. Life will also bring us opportunities to make changes in the hope of a better future.

There will be transitions and pivots. Sometimes we are forced to change, and other times we choose to change. In either case, we may struggle or can be uncomfortable as we seek the best course.

The mature couple had worked for years for an active retirement, but before her retirement party, her husband suffered a fatal heart attack, and she became a widow. Her adjustments are dramatic: life without her lifelong companion and the sudden, unexpectedly different life experience.

Sam’s friend from childhood killed himself. They had a tempestuous relationship. Just a month before they had one of their arguments and hadn’t spoken again. Sam must adjust to the loss of a friend and nagging guilt about not reaching out to him after their last argument.

As we age more and more changes are medically induced

A dear friend discovered he had a very, very slow-growing cancer. His preferred standard treatment interrupted his almost perfect lifestyle for several months. He’s spending more time these days with family and friends.

Instead of becoming a “cancer victim” or a “cancer patient,” he has concentrated on answering a question his mother taught him to ask: “What good can we make of this?”

We choose to make some changes

Many changes are thrust upon us, but we also make changes that we intend to result in a better life. Those changes vary widely.

The budding young scientist met the dance instructor. Magic and marriage happened. Now their future is unfolding, in a way that neither of them nor their families could have imagined.

Rich and Lyn have been married for over twenty years. They lived on a farm until Lyn said she wanted to move to a nearby town where she could see friends more easily. They live in town now and Rich visits the farm every day.

A hyper-successful CPA and wealth manager was moving toward retirement, but after reading Halftime: Moving from Success to Significance he shifted to part-time wealth manager. Now he uses much of his discretionary time in the management of a Mexican orphanage.

Changes await you. No matter how much good comes from the change, you will likely mourn something you leave behind. There will always be a time of transition and discomfort. If you instigate a change, there will always be unintended consequences.

What transitions await you?


Terry Moore, CCIM, is the author of Building Legacy Wealth: How to Build Wealth and Live a Life Worth Imitating. Read his “Welcome to My Blog.

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