My day of reckoning has arrived. Today April 30 is my last day in my current post . Yes , I volunteered to stand down as General Secretary of Education and Training Boards Ireland ( ETBI) having served 21 years but it is still not easy. I have read the books about this stage of a career and what to do and not to do. I have read the wise and funny remarks about retirement; I have spoken to friends and experts; but this is something I must do alone !
Perhaps , over the past 40 years my identity has been somewhat tied up with my title; I have been a school Principal , CEO of a radio station and General Secretary of ETBI . I will not likely have a title going forward so I will be like most other people. And there is nothing wrong with me just being me !
But I am determined to use my time to do what I want to do instead of what I have to do. I am getting off the treadmill to face an unknown and uncertain future and that is perhaps the fearful if also exciting aspect about retiring.
Actually , I don’t like that word ( retirement ) and what it implies; the book is right when it says I should look at this as ” refirement” not retirement.I might be retiring from my post but I am not retiring from life. As the election poster said -a lot done but more to do .
I still intend to keep my work routine and work from my home office. Perhaps blogging , or writing about leadership and management or whatever I think is relevant.
But I have been re-invigorated by another development last week .I have been honoured and privileged to have been re-elected in Brussels  for a further year as President of the European Federation of Education Employers( EFEE) . So I will still be involved in education and training at a European level and I certainly look forward to that.
Time now to fold up the tent and move on from my present career at ETBI . From midnight tonight and for the first time in 45 years I will not be in employment but I will be employed doing what I want to do . Yes I suppose that is freedom and being free to now work on my long-deferred projects will hopefully bring a sense of contentment and harmony. I wonder if those words will apply to me ? Wait and see ! Yes I will be off the treadmill  but running at my own pace and in the direction in which I want to run. Perhaps that is what I wish for most.

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