Your Voice: What have I left behind?
In retirement, one realizes some things we take with us and others we leave behind when we step away from our careers.
Ten years after I left the company in 2010, I look back at 25 years of service and ask a seemingly simple but tricky question beyond narcissism and unfair self-discount: What have I left behind?
What I left is much richer than a green badge, car sticker, Hills’ house, the park, the little mosque, the office, my favorite relaxation spot, the peace of the library, the sandy beaches, the soothing waves of Ras Tanura, a charming view out of the Dining Hall windows, the shades of a favorite tree on King’s Road, etc.
What I left is much bigger and richer than all of these things combined, although I finally confess that I have left behind forever priceless bits and pieces of my own soul entwined to each one of them.
I have left behind memories of learning mistakes, compass realignment, success and precious moments of self-actualization along with proud team-based and individual achievements.
I definitely took with me and actually won a few but unshakeable friendships that outweigh and outlast lots of the superficial and business facilitated relationships.
I took with me many unique lessons about mentoring as I lived and rotated while growing between the two eternal roles of being a mentee and a mentor.
Dynamic embrace of the bigger picture, system thinking and value chain approaches, focusing on strategic imperatives, auditing business relevance, engraining innovation both in processes and products, listening to gut feelings and seasoned intuitive calls, are only few examples of what I have gained.
Gratitude and appreciation are by far the most cherished lessons and values that I have learned and are still learning from my company, its growing corporate culture and its special people. A little post script and second thought: Did I really leave 10 years ago? I strongly doubt it as my heart and soul are still living and roaming there without a badge and a car sticker!
Your Voice reflects the thoughts and opinions of the writer, and not necessarily those of the publication.