I don’t know about you, but I have hit 2021 in introspection mode.  After the roller coaster last year, I have felt a strong need to review where I am headed with my retirement.  Maybe it is the 7-year–itch (I have now been “retired” 7 years!), but I have felt compelled to review what in my retirement is working for me and whether I am still following my passion.  Perhaps it is because we have now hit the hottest time of the year here on the edge of the Karoo and I am being forced to sit quietly for much of the day.

Don’t’ throw the baby out with the bathwater

Last week I came close to throwing the whole Retirement coaching aspect out the window.  But, on review, I realised that it is the marketing that’s currently consuming my time, not the coaching, and it is the aspect of coaching that truly does NOT inspire me.  With the assistance of some coach friends, I came to see that my marketing effort needs to be contained, leaving me time and energy to do the things that I am more passionate about.

I also realised that if I have more time to follow my creative pursuits, the energy will radiate into my marketing endeavours.  So, this week, I set out to restrict my marketing to 10 hours.  It was only when I was talking of throwing in the towel I realised that my work, as I said recently, creates a structure and balance in my life and I am definitely not yet ready to pack it all in.  Interesting that I find myself coming back to the very subject that I have been blogging on recently!

Settling into the Country – Progress update

I promised earlier that I would keep you updated on my progress with moving to the country.  I am now truly settled into my new house and eagerly awaiting the day when my friends from Cape Town feel safe to visit.  But, it is the garden that currently excites me most.  And perhaps that is why I have been feeling less passionate about my work.  Is it the pull of the garden?

In the front garden, I have planned a water-wise Karoo garden and thus far in the heat, I have simply planted a few things that I have received from friends, as a starter.  In the large space at the back, plans are well underway for my fruit and vegetable patch.  The olives were first in as I needed an orchard up against the fence to build a bit of a buffer between myself and the neighbours.  That was quickly joined by my Turkish fig and in the autumn it will be consolidated with some of the summer fruiting trees that predominate in this part of the world, such as apricot and yellow cling peaches.

Setting up Structure for the garden that will sustain me

Currently in progress is the shade cloth covering that will protect my vegetables from the harsh sun until the trees around it can supply the essential protection.  The shade cloth will also be a boon with the prodigious population of mousebirds.  With recommendations from those who are walking the permaculture route ahead of me, I shall be constructing a mandala garden which comprises 6 circles in a circle with one circle in the centre. Why circles you say?  It is because I shall be making use of chickens to turn and fertilize the soil and a dome to house the chickens is considered the simplest way to keep them rotating around the beds ahead of planting.  This week I shall be visiting the electrical wholesale suppliers to buy the PVC piping to make the frame of the dome and I shall order the chickens!!

Feel free to contact me and let me know how your 2021 has started.

Best wishes,