By Cynthia Barnett
I’ve got to be honest with you, the greatest human failing is
not being able to judge your own personal strengths, gifts,
talents and abilities. In fact, if you’re like most folks, you
spend way too much time identifying your weaknesses and
spending all your time trying to overcome these imperfections.
This is very detrimental to our spirit and totally takes away
from your strengths and talents. If you’ve been doing this all
your life, now is the time to stop! Being a successful retiree
means learning how to use your strengths, gifts, talents and
abilities. In this article, we’ll discuss ten proven tips to
help you take advantage of your abilities:
• Recognize your abilities – The first thing is that you have
to do is recognize your abilities and dismiss feeling of
inadequacy. You must recognize your strengths, gifts, talents
and abilities, whatever they may be. Believe in your ‘true
self’ and find out what you’re truly good at and what your
“unique calling is.” We all have special talents and are
• Identify your unique strengths – Explore and identify your
strengths and talents. For instance, if you had pursued
carpentry as a career or as a hobby, your strengths could be
eye for detail, precision, and creativity. You could mold your
after-retirement career around these traits.
• Be confident and proud of your strengths– It is a natural
tendency to underplay your strengths. After all, no one wants
to be a “brag” but retirement is the time to be confident and
proud. You’ve accomplished so much in your life and now is the
time to take advantage of your skills. So, its OK to give
yourself a small tap on the back. By capitalizing on your
strengths, you can accomplish all of your goals and help
in your path.
• Building your retired life around your strengths – After
recognizing your strengths, gifts, talents and abilities, plan
your retired life around them. Use your skills and talents to
identify opportunities. Perhaps you’ll pursue a ‘second’
after retirement or a volunteer opportunity. The possibilities
are endless. Just be open and receptive to receive and you’ll
gain a sense of fullness and accomplishment.
• Finding new goals –. Now that you have some time on your
hands, really think about your goals and aspirations. What is
it that you want to accomplish in your life? Has your dreams
changed since you were a teenager? Do you still have the same
interests that you did 20 years ago? How can you make your
dreams become a reality?
• Start a business – Today, retirees are better educated and
skilled. Use your knowledge and skills to start a business or
nonprofit organization. Not only will you use your talents in
wonderful way but you’ll make a significant contribution to
• Educate others – If teaching and coaching is your special
talent then don’t hog it, share your knowledge with others.
Conduct adult education classes or tutor students.
• Re-education – Reeducate yourself. After all, learning is a
lifelong process and you could use your retirement years to
increase your knowledge. Take this time to learn new skills or
brush up on rusty ones.
• Community service – Pay back to the community that gave you
so much by volunteering your services. For instance, if you’re
a retired carpenter, perhaps you can make cribs for a teenage
• Remain active –Stay active in the community. Perhaps you can
run for political office, help someone with their campaign,
become a deacon, whatever you’re called to do.
In conclusion, everyone has special gifts and talents that
could be utilized to make the world a better place in which to
live. Even if they were previously hidden or dormant,
retirement is the time to take advantage and pursue them.
About The Author: Dr. Cynthia Barnett is a ”refired” educator
who had reinvented her life moving from the school house to an
entrepreneurial venue.. She is the author of “Stop Singing the
Blues: 10 Powerful Strategies for Hitting the high Notes in
Your Life, and RE-FIRE, Don’t Retire: 7 Secrets of Highly
Successful Retirees She was featured by Time magazine for
article on women in mid-life who have reinvented themselves.
you are ready to “RE-FIRE” your life sign up for my free 7 day
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