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Only a decade ago, I dreamed of carefree travel and sleeping late once I retired.....


That was back when I worked for a corporation and my life looked differently. Back then, I could count on:
1. A monthly check
2. Health benefits
3. Paid vacation
4. Matching payments to my 401k
5. Enough money left over for hefty contributions to my mutual funds
But life changed. Not for the first time, but the years caught up to me, and I was in my 50s. For personal and lifestyle reasons, I left the security of working for a corporation, to start-up my second business. This one focused on communications services and consulting. Since then, I moved from the left coast to the right, to start up a third business. This one focused on marketing, communications and management services. That is my current state.
Today I read the following from AP:
"ST. LOUIS, Missouri (AP) -- As he turns 80 Wednesday, Chuck Berry could leave the hard work of great music to younger souls, and rest comfortably as the rock 'n' roll legend who first made his mark in the 1950s.
"But Berry, the duck-walking, guitar-playing rock genius who defined the music's joy and rebellion in such classics as Johnny B. Goode, Sweet Little Sixteen and Roll Over Beethoven, has plenty left to say and play."
Well, Chuck, you are my new role model. While you are rocking out to Roll Over Beethoven, at 80 I will be rolling out of bed to work on a new book, perhaps help some clients, maybe even make a presentation somewhere to an audience willing to listen to an old (but wise, I hope) geezer.
Not something I thought about when I left the corporate world. Not something I even considered. But when one trades in security for lifestyle, these things happen. Unless my golden parachute falls from the sky, my chosen lifestyle and the bills that come with it will cause me to forego retirement. Not a bad thing, but a real thing.
My thought in writing this is that many of you are much younger than I, and are either working for yourselves or are considering it.
I wouldn't change anything that I did. No way do I want to trade in my current life for a past life. But security and consumerism are not two things I care much about. Who knows? I may still make it big. But if I don't, that is okay.
My point: There are lots of things to consider when analyzing where are travels will take us. I think the most important question to ask is: Will I look back with regrets? My advice–evaluate where you are going frequently, before you get there and well before you look back with regrets.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lewis Green, Founder and Managing Principal of L&G Business Solutions, LLC, (http://www.l-gsolutions.com) brings three decades of business management experience. L&G Business Solutions, LLC, represents his third company. Additionally, he held management positions with GTE Discovery Publications, Puget Sound Energy and Starbucks Coffee Company.

In addition to his business experiences, Lewis is a published author and a former journalist, sports writer and travel writer. His feature articles have appeared in books, magazines and newspapers throughout North America. He has taught in public schools; lobbied for organizations both in state capitols and in Washington, D.C.; delivered workshops, seminars, and training programs; and made presentations to audiences in colleges, businesses and professional organizations. Lewis also has served as a book editor with a large publisher, the Executive Editor overseeing four magazines, and a newspaper department editor. Lewis served eight years in the U.S. Air Force, where he received the Air Force Commendation Medal.