There's a trick to the Graceful Exit. It begins with the vision to
recognize when a job, a life stage, a relationship is over -- and to let
go. It means leaving what's over without denying its validity or its
past importance in our lives. It involves a sense of future, a belief
that every exit line is an entry, that we are moving on, rather than out.
The trick of retiring well may be the trick of living well. It's hard to
recognize that life isn't a holding action, but a process. It's hard to
learn that we don't leave the best parts of ourselves behind, back in the
dugout or the office. We own what we learned back there. The experiences
and the growth are grafted onto our lives. And when we exit, we can take
ourselves along -- quite gracefully.
-- Ellen Goodman