AARP’s new Life Reimagined program is taking root in New Jersey! Life Reimagined, a first-of-its-kind series of free online programs at www.lifereimagined.com and live experiences called “Checkups," designed to help people reflect, evaluate priorities, and take action to live their best life.
Across the state New Jerseyans are starting their own personal journeys with Life Reimagined by attending a Checkup or using the online resources available. As more and more people come together through the Life Reimagined program and share their stories of transition, overcoming obstacles, and finding passion and purpose in their lives, a trend emerges; people are looking for supports to help guide them through the tough transitions in life!
One woman recently sat down with AARP New Jersey and shared her own personal and powerful story of reinvention. Jacqueline Robinson had an established career in pharmaceuticals, and had been in the industry for over 20 years. Then, when her company downsized she was faced with the difficult scenario to either find a new job in her industry, or walk away entirely and start a new chapter in her life’s journey; which is exactly what she did! Here in her own words how she navigated this difficult transition and how Life Reimagined helped her on her journey of “What’s Next?”
AARP New Jersey: When was the moment you knew you had to make a change and weren't going back to pharmaceuticals?
Jacqueline: During the last few years, prior to being downsized, I began to dread going to work. Work was becoming more stressful and it seemed that as soon as you put out one fire another one emerged. I think I knew as soon as I lost my job that I really did not want to go back into the industry. The final decision was made when I went on a trip by myself to just think. During the drive up, something said to me “you need to say out loud what you want.” The only thing that I could say was “I don’t want to go back.” The moment I said that, I felt like a ton of weight was taken off of me. At that moment, I knew I was definitely not going back.
AARP New Jersey: What existing resources and supports did you have or tap into to make this change?
Jacqueline: In the beginning I started reading books that helped me from a spiritual perspective. For me, I had to believe that there was a higher source that loved me, would take care of me and guide me along the way.
AARP New Jersey: What new resources did you find with Life Reimagined and how did they help you?
Jacqueline: After taking “Embrace Your Calling” and “Reimagine Your Career” on www.liferimagined.org, I identified the skills and the fields that I enjoyed. There were also a few surprises. I did not expect education and training to be a favorite field. But when I think back to my management days, I loved training and developing the people that worked for me. I also realized how my profile changed from corporate to wanting to be around people who were social, artistic and enterprising.
AARP New Jersey: Where are you at in your journey today?
Jacqueline: Today, I am using the skills and talents that I truly enjoy in my favorite areas. I started my own company, JRR Consulting, Inc. One arm of the business is my seminar "Passion & Purpose: A Guide to Rewriting Life After Retirement." This seminar was designed especially for professional baby boomer women to help them identify their passions and use it as a guide to finding their purpose. The second arm of my business is geared towards small businesses. Along with my associate we utilize our sales, marketing and IT experience to help small businesses grow. I also continued studying interior design at New York School of Design after receiving a certificate in Interior Design at Middlesex College. I continue to work with a local interior designer on special projects thus fulfilling my need to be creative and artistic.
AARP New Jersey: Looking back, what advice would you have for you or someone else looking to make a change?
Jacqueline: Looking back I realize that what happened to me, being downsized, was truly a blessing in disguise. Listen to the promptings within that are urging you to make a change. Many times we know that we want to do, but fear steps in. My advice is just take the first step trusting and believing that a higher power is there to guide you. Develop a support group-these are the people who believe in you and are there to cheer you on. And finally, believe that you don’t deserve a just getting by life. Imagine your life at its fullest and then go out there and make it happen!
Learn more today at: www.Lifereimagined.org