The Next Chapter

What a difference a year can make! I recently met my daughter, Brittany, in New York City, where she was attending a work conference and I was going to celebrate my sixty-first birthday in grand style. We enjoyed great food, shopping, and theater in my favorite city, and on the face of it, it may seem like it was just another fun mother/daughter trip; but as I look back on that time, this trip was so much more than that because it signified just how much my life has changed in a very short period of time: changed for the good in profound and dramatic ways.

Today, I am no longer a bank executive managing private banking for a regional bank, but instead, I am unabashedly retired and a manager of myself. MY CHOICE! Today, I am an author, speaker, consultant, and coach; President and Founder of Rita P. Mitchell, LLC.; and I am on a mission to carry out my life’s purpose and passion, which is to empower young women to own their phenomenal selves. I have started a new chapter.

What is amazing about this trip is that it took place exactly a year to the day that my daughter and I were on a flight coming back from Hong Kong another mother/daughter work trip. We were coming back in time to celebrate my sixtieth birthday with my husband, Fulton.

Here is where the change is profound.

Before I could go to Hong Kong, I had to do the following: coordinate vacation days with my employer; put a plan in place to manage ongoing workflow with my team of forty; make sure that I communicated that I would be out of office with all relevant parties … you get the drift. In addition, I was also mentally preparing to go back into “Rita Mode” of working a fifty to sixty-hour work week in a non-supportive work environment. I think that might be called the beginning of STRESS after vacation, but for me at the time, I would have called this business as usual.

So, let me talk about business as usual today. Instead of thinking about how I can please and serve my employer to the best of my ability, I wake up thinking about what more I can do to enable goodness to move forward in others. I wake up thinking about what more I can do to help young women to grow, to aspire, to lead. I wake up thinking about how I can share what I have learned to make it easier for others to stay on their journey to success. And guess what? In my new universe, I don’t need permission or approval to choose or to create change for the betterment of others. Why? Because I don’t have a boss. I am the boss of me! And I get to choose when, where, and with whom I work to create this change; and I get to say no to whomever I want.

The next chapter of my life is here and it is time to embrace it, because life is both short and purposeful, and I don’t plan on missing a moment of it!

But this realization, this freedom, this power of owning my phenomenal self did not come overnight. It was neither my plan nor my desire to retire at the very early age of sixty; however, when destiny presents itself and calls you out, you must go forward. To do otherwise is to make a choice to go backward. Destiny must be answered.

Now, destiny is presenting itself to you.

Where will you be in a year? What chapter will you write? It is never too early to begin thinking about what you want out of life. It is never too early to begin to create your own definition of success. You are phenomenal, and I know you’re phenomenal; but the question is, do you? Right now, you can begin the journey that will help you answer that question with a resounding YES! With me as your guide, you can begin your journey to success, you can realize your destiny, and you can own your phenomenal self. Let’s get started!

About The Author


Rita P. Mitchell is an overcomer.  In a career spanning nearly four decades, she has navigated countless roadblocks and conquered numerous obstacles to accomplish her personal and professional goals in the very competitive financial services industry.  Rita became president of her own insurance and securities brokerage firm, Mitchell Financial, Inc., spoke on the TEDx stage, has been a frequent contributor to Black Enterprise magazine, and became the first-ever recipient of First Horizon’s 2018 Inclusion & Diversity Leader’s Award.  Before retiring in early 2018, Rita served as Executive Vice President and Manager of Private Client Services for Middle Tennessee, First Tennessee Bank.  Most recently, she has written Own Your Phenomenal Self, a guide to empowering young career women to achieve their desired success and an Amazon bestseller. In addition, Rita is a certified John C. Maxwell Coach, Trainer, and Speaker.  Currently, she serves on the boards of the YWCA USA, Cheekwood, Leadership Nashville Alumni Association, and Board Chair of the YWCA of Nashville & Middle TN.

Every month, Rita shares her thoughts, experiences, and opinions to encourage you to stay on your journey to your desired success. Sign up to get Rita's monthly motivation delivered straight to your inbox!

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