“After your career ends, all you have is your mind.” Steve Smith Sr. played for both the Baltimore Ravens and the Carolina Panthers. One of the NFL’s most productive wide receivers of the 21st century, Steve led the league in catches, touchdowns, and receptions during his playing days. And his comment about life after football is fitting. He decided to live unstuck and is now a TV announcer.
I thought about what it takes to be a professional football player: all the hours of practice, the coaching, the studying other teams’ strategies and the knowledge of physical care. And then they retire at a fairly early age. It dawned on me: we all go through this. We work at our chosen profession. Since the change in the economy, we may work in many different companies or even different fields. Or we may have had our own business with all that entails. And then it goes to the next owner. Or we raised our children. And then they leave home. But we give it our all while we’re actively involved. When we elect to retire or when life changes, Smith was right. All you have is your mind.
What will you do with your mind at that time? I encourage my clients to build a bridge of interests and opportunities from one chapter to the next. Ideally, this process begins before retirement. Or prior to a layoff. But it can start at any time.
Now, how are you going to do that? Let’s start with: What do you like to do? What tickles your interest? What do people come to you for? For me, people come to solve their problems and get past a stuck point in their lives. I am curious about others’ perspectives and motivations. And then I go from there to help them solve their issues. I’m living unstuck.
Are you bored? Start looking at what used to excite you. Hobbies? Interests? Or time to move in a new direction? Open new doors. Live unstuck. #Unstuck Living
Somewhere behind the athlete you’ve become and the hours of practice and the coaches who have pushed you is a little girl who fell in love with the game and never looked back. Play for her.