Retirement is defined as; “withdrawal from one’s position or occupation or from active working life”. Note that it does not say withdrawal from life! Retirement is the beginning of the next chapter. A chapter that contains all the fun things that had to be put off for years.
The day after you finish the celebratory retirement cake at work is the first day of the rest of your life. You might find yourself thinking about work, that is natural, and if it makes you feel better check in. In a few weeks, maybe a month, you will feel less and less like checking in and be ready for that new beginning.
Beginning retirement is similar to the beginning of a marriage so go on a ‘honeymoon’. This little break will help you transition, relax, and celebrate your entrance to retirement. Take time on the trip to think and talk over what you want to do and come back ready to roll.
The biggest asset in retirement is TIME. This sounds daunting and like any big change, sometimes it is hard to know what to do first. Just start somewhere. You honestly can’t go wrong if you are doing something you love, or, spending time with people you love.
Spending time with your family might be the number one wish for most people. Not being bound by a job, this might be the opportunity to move close to your kids or siblings. If you have grand kids, and your health allows, insist your kids go out for the evening while you get to know the grand kids. Spoil them rotten (but not too rotten) and be the grandparent of the year. If there are no grand kids no problem! Be with the people who mean most to you.
It is very popular these days to take a run at a new career post retirement. This second career can be charitable; you could work for a start-up or small business you believe in and take a small salary to help them succeed. This career could be to try something new; work in a business that you always wanted to see the inner workings of. Retirement used to mean leaving the working world but not anymore, just be careful, don’t completely give away your hard earned time.
Are you worried you will be bored? There are plenty of jokes about how you can do all you have dreamed of in six months. How people retire and then expire. Do not let that be you! If your personal to do list is on the short side here are a few things you might want to begin with;
- Read the classics (or read trash!)
- Visit your family and friends
- Take a class
- Find a new hobby
- Throw parties
- Work out
The more busy you are, the more fun you will have. Being busy will keep you young. Enjoy all the things that come with retirement and live life to the fullest. Make this the best chapter yet.