Wednesday, June 26, 2019


I live in Saratoga Springs, NY where the historic thoroughbred racetrack attracts thousands of visitors every summer. Since residing here, I’ve learned a little something about horse racing.

As the horses move into position at the starting gate, some of them are fitted with blinkers—firm leather squares that attach to the bridle. The blinkers allow horses to only see what is directly in front of them, eliminating distractions from their peripheral vision. Without the blinkers, they can end up running off course. The blinkers keep them focused.

Maybe there’s a place for “blinkers” in retirement, especially when it comes to being in the starting gate. Let me explain.

In my retirement workshops, I frequently talk with people who are wrestling with the question, “What’s next?” The answer to this question often requires starting something. But when I begin to explore possibilities, people are quick to talk about all the reasons not to start. “It’s going to cost too much. It’s going to take too long. It’s going to require work.” 

Instead of being distracted with all the reasons not to start, what if you put on blinkers? What if, no matter what your circumstances and reasons for not doing something, you imagine yourself in the starting gate? The blinkers keep you focused. They help you successfully finish the race.

Copyright 2019. Patrice Jenkins. All Rights Reserved.

No comments: