Life is a Labyrinth

This blog is written by Lee Gale Gruen to help Baby Boomers, seniors, retirees, and those soon to retire find joy, excitement, and satisfaction in life after retirement. Her public lecture on this subject is titled: “Reinventing Yourself in Your Retirement.” Her memoir, Adventures with Dad: A Father and Daughter’s Journey Through a Senior Acting Class, is available by clicking here Click here for her website:

CHITCHAT:  I will be giving free public lectures on the following dates, times, and locations:

September 9, 2018, 3:15pm, “Reinventing Yourself in Your Retirement,” THRIVE Expo –  sponsored by The Gazette newspaper, Hotel at Kirkwood Center, 7725 Kirkwood Blvd SW, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404 (No RSVP Required)

October 16, 2018, 1:00pm, “Reinventing Yourself in Your Senior Years,” The Holmstad Retirement Community, 700 W. Fabyan Pkwy, Batavia, IL 60510, (630) 239-1133,  (RSVP REQUIRED)

October 17, 2018, 10:30am, “Reinventing Yourself in Your Senior Years,” Windsor Park Retirement Community, 124 Windsor Park Dr, Carol Stream, IL 60188, (331) 218-3637, (RSVP REQUIRED)

October 19, 2018, 10:30am, “Reinventing Yourself in Your Senior Years,” Covenant Village of Northbrook, 2625 Techny Rd, Northbrook, IL 60062, (224) 412-8421, (RSVP REQUIRED)

Now, on to my blog:

LabyrinthSome months ago, I strolled a lovely community labyrinth.  Some anonymous person or persons had searched for the stones, gathered them, hauled them to the site, and laid them out in an intricate maze, all so I could enjoy it and discover its message.  Labyrinths date back more than 4000 years and have been found all over the world.  Although many dead ends abound for the labyrinth voyager, there is only one pathway which leads to the center–the goal.

As I made my way around the contortions of this ancient puzzle, it set the stage for quiet, contemplation, solitude, and peace.  I felt relaxed and had these thoughts:

Life is a labyrinth. We go around in circles seeking our goal but often hit one barrier after the next. When we reach a dead end, we are forced to retrace our steps and try a new direction. We can visualize what we seek, even see it.  Sometimes, it seems so close, and yet we are quite far. At other times, it seems so far, yet we are actually very close.

We each travel on our own personal quest.  We are surrounded by the same environment as our neighbors, but we view it differently, experience it differently, interact with it differently, each in our own reality bubble.

Yes, we can take shortcuts.  We can step over the boundaries of the labyrinth and rush to the end. But, we’ve shortchanged ourselves. We’ve forgotten the importance of the process which is how we learn about life so we can appreciate and benefit from the eventual attainment of our objective. Otherwise, we have no understanding of what we have reached, and we may destroy it with our ignorance.

Don’t fight the labyrinth.  Embrace it.  Follow it.  Grab it.  Don’t rush things–focus, go with the flow as they say.  This is not a contest–no winners and losers.  Discover the pace that works for you; discover which path works for you.  It’s different for everyone.  The wealth is attained from the journey, not the completion.


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Photo credit: jack dorsey via /  CC BY


Filed under active seniors, Baby boomers, gerontology, healthy aging, longevity, reinvention, retirement, senior citizens, seniors, successful aging, wellness

8 responses to “Life is a Labyrinth

  1. patricia Spiegel

    Love this! Thank you Lee Gale. AND I admire how active your are with speaking.

  2. Failure equals the possibility of learned lessons.

  3. Looks like you’ve lined up a great trip–way to go!

    • Yes, I’ve been hired by a few different sponsors to give talks in various states on senior reinvention. It’s pretty exciting except for the time on airplanes which isn’t my favorite place to be.

  4. lovely sentiments 🙂

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