Happy New Year!Can you believe it is finally 2021!  

Looking back on this past year, it is hard to believe that we’ll ever forget it.  Will it become a distant memory or will we always remember this as the year of the pandemic?  In the future, will we think of it as a major historic event, like 9-11 in 2001 or the “crash” and worldwide economic downturn of 2008? There have been so many changes for all of us.  Some are temporary but others may be a bit more permanent.

After this, I think employers will have to consider giving more choices.  In the future, I imagine it will become standard practice to allow more employees to work from home, especially now that we have shown we can do it.  I wonder if the idea to convert all the empty office spaces into more housing will catch on. Encouraging people to work and live where they want to could reduce commutes and eliminate some of the traffic jams that were a regular occurrence before the pandemic.

How will health care and education change?  Will we be able to travel, go to restaurants and bars, attend a sporting event or a concert in the same ways we did before? I really hope so, but somehow I think it won’t be the same.  I remember that we used to be able to say goodbye to someone at the gate in the airport, we could wear jewelry and shoes and there was no such thing as a security line.  We never went back to the way it was before.  Could it be that we’ll have a rapid test for the virus before we can get on and off planes?

Everything seems to be different.  For the first time in many years, we are not skiing in Eastern Washington on New Years Day with our friends.  We are staying home and spending time with two of our four grandkids.  Since we are being hit with a major winter storm, which means lots of wind and rain, instead of sliding down the mountain, we’ll be reading books, playing with Christmas toys, putting together puzzles, and baking a cake.

I’ve never been a big New Year’s resolution person.  I can keep something up for a few weeks, but by February I usually forget whatever it was I resolved to do.  If it is not a habit by then, nothing will change.

But for 2021 I thought about some words and phrases I want to focus on.  These are my Top 10 big ideas that I hope to implement at the beginning of my retirement season.  Instead of trying to plan everything out in detail – I’ve “resolved” to see what happens and stay flexible.  Instead of a resolution, I’ll never keep, I’m printing my Top 10 list and sticking it on my bathroom mirror.  As I begin each new day, I’ll read these to remind myself, at least for a few months, to think about these things:

1. Be open to new possibilities

2. Care for others

3. Embrace Change

4. Be Patient

5. Look for the Good

6. Reconnect with old friends and family

7. Don’t be in a hurry

8. Remember “Every day is Saturday”

9. Make new friends

10. Find joy in simple pleasures

Whether you are considering retirement, retiring this year, or are already retired – I wish you all the best in 2021!  I hope you will “Rock Your Retirement!” Happy New Year!

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