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Retirement can be difficult for founders of successful enterprises to embrace.
Michael had built his company into a powerhouse. It had been a central passion in his life for well over 30 years. Many of his closest relationships were intertwined with his work.
But at 64, he was finding the pace overwhelming and realized he couldn’t continue in his current role indefinitely. He knew it was time to sell his business but the vacuum that would create in his life stopped him from moving forward.
He needed a new vision of what to do with himself.
His first step was to figure out what was important to him in the future. He wanted on-going opportunities to meet people he found congenial. He enjoyed entertaining, good food, good wine, gardening and the outdoors. He still wanted to run an enterprise. But he needed it to be smaller and less demanding. And he wanted to be able to take chunks of time off.
He brainstormed and researched many different ideas and concluded that owning and operating a small vineyard was the perfect solution.
After developing this vision for his future, he was able to move forward with selling his company. Simultaneously, he launched the search for a vineyard, took seminars on winemaking and got to know people in the wine industry.
Michael moved forward into his new life with gusto and few regrets. Leaving his company had never been appealing. But moving toward a new vision that fit his current needs was a different thing altogether.
(The opinions expressed are not necessarily those of St. Louis Public Radio.)