I was talking to a friend this week and amongst other things we chatted about my decision to work reduced hours at the office even though I am the only bread winner in my household and that financially and career wise there was an impact to my decision. I told her how I used my 60 year old technique and that after that there was no doubt on my mind that I have taken the right decision.
I am sharing this with you today as I think that this is quite valuable. We make decisions that impact our lives every day, no matter how young or old we are. What to study at College? and Should I marry him? are not the most important decisions in our lives, the things we decide to do or not to do every day can also affect our future and our family’s future.
So here it is, the 60 year old technique!
Sit down or lie down some place comfortable where you know you will not be disturbed for a while, have a glass of wine if you wish (highly recommended). Close your eyes and imagine that you are waking up tomorrow and you are 60 years old, you are now looking back at your life as it is right now and if it would have continued to be exactly the same for as many years as it takes you to turn 60. Your kids will be grown up by now. Now ask yourself and honestly answer all of these questions:
· Are you happy?
· Are your kids, husband, family happy?
· What are your kids saying about you?
o In my case I was trying to decide whether to stay more time at home with them vs. continuing to work full time – so my questions were:
o Are my kids saying?:
- My mum is a very successful VP but I never got to see her much
- My mum was always with me at every event and every single party but did not do much with her own life
- My mum is successful and have a nice job but she was with us as much as she could, she missed some stuff but was always there for the important ones
· Are you proud of what you see?
· Are you or your children saying something that you regret, something you wish you could have changed?
This is a very powerful exercise, you may see things you do not like and things you love. Hopefully what you see can help you on your decision making process. However, please remember that there are no right or wrong answers. The same answer could be great for somebody and awful for others. It is all about you and what is right for you and your family. This is just a way to help you make a decision.
I know sometimes we have no choices, but if you are one of the lucky people that do have choices, give it a go, you have nothing to lose, and a glass of wine is always a good thing to have!