Recently, I had the pleasure of speaking with an incredible woman who joined our Create Work You Love fall program. Her name is Jackie, and she’s about to turn the big 6-0.

Lost her retirement.

After a successful career in marketing in the UK, Jackie was planning her retirement. In Britain, the minimum age for retirement was 65 for men and 60 for women. Recently, the government changed the minimum age to be 65 for both men and women arguing it’s more equitable (even though women still earn less than men and the pay gap hasn’t been resolved. sigh.)

As I spoke with Jackie, she shared how much she’d been counting on retiring at 60 in the next year. She’s very disappointed that she will now have to work another five years due to the whims of a political system that is out of her control.

Can disappointment be a gift?

Diving deeper into her circumstances, Jackie told me that she really wants to teach marketing online in a new way.

Or as she put it; “I don’t want to end my days in sweatpants watching Netflix. But seriously, I’d like to create some kind of legacy and share the contents of my head.”

But I’m too old.

Jackie also confessed that she feels too old and outdated to teach marketing online. She observed that there are so many young kids who call themselves “experts” without the years of experience she’s accumulated. These kids are wildly successful, but Jackie felt they were lacking in quality.

She could bring depth of knowledge and experience to a shallow and saturated market.

I told Jackie I could see a huge opportunity for her to work with clients (like me!) who want someone more seasoned.

Personally, I know I’d appreciate marketing advice from an accomplished, knowledgeable and wise expert like Jackie that was delivered in a digestible and affordable way using modern technology.

Suddenly, Jackie started to get excited at the prospect of working again.

I said “What if the change in the UK retirement policy was a gift in disguise? What if, by forcing you to work five more years, you end up finding a whole new career that keeps you energized and joyful for the next ten years!?”

This reframe lit Jackie up!

Sometimes, our setbacks SERVE us.

The extra hurdle you have to jump over can become the boost you need to reach the next level.

When disappointments occur, or things don’t play out as expected (which happens to 99.99% of us at some point), we have a choice. We can feel like victims. We can wallow (I’ve certainly gone there, trust me…it ain’t worth it). We can blame other people, or the political system. 

Or, we can reframe our reality to feel better.

We can choose to find the gift or the opportunity in the face of challenges. We can look for the hidden gem inside the pile of stinky doo doo. 

Today, my question for you is this; have you faced a difficulty that ended up being a blessing in disguise? How have your setbacks served you? Leave a comment below and let us know!

May you create work and a life you love,

Vanessa

P.S. We’re comin’ up on the end of the year AND the end of a decade! Wowza. This is the perfect time to reflect on the last 10 years, and set bold goals and visions for the next 10 years.

I’ll be offering a LIVE Webinar to do a powerful Decade in Review: 2010 – 2020 Reflection + Visioning in the coming month…so stay tuned!

P.P.S. In the meanwhile, if you want to join our next Live Soul Planner Power Hour, register HERE.

These live working sessions are on Monday mornings to help you plan a productive and joyful week. We’ll be going through a Weekly Planning Process and then spending time knocking out some of your top priority items by working individually, together.

Join HERE.

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