Nobody knows with certainty what the future holds, but I intend to maintain a positive attitude as I start the next phase of my life’s journey. I recognize that achieving the freedom of retirement is hard-earned, and I intend to enjoy it fully.
“It’s been 50 plus years of working and it’s time to do things differently.”Me
My wife has already retired and is looking forward to me joining her – well at least that is what she tells me.
Our “Rules of Retirement”
I’ve thought long and hard about the transition my wife and I are facing in January, so we developed these “Rules of Retirement”. These are guidelines for our lives in retirement. Post-retirement, our lives will be dictated by us. For the past 50+ years, some other person, our employer, has been telling us what to do. Now, we will have the privilege, and obligation, to decide for ourselves when and what we will do. Here is a list of priorities for our retirement:
1. Maintain A Positive Attitude
Recognize that every day is a gift. Take the time to celebrate life, and appreciate the things around you; listen to the birds, smell the grass, hug your significant other. Look for things to be thankful for, and focus on the good things in life. Tune out the extraneous noise and take time to appreciate life.
2. Pursue What We Enjoy
Retirement will be a time to pursue what we enjoy. This will be a time to explore and to discover what it is in life that excites us. This is a time to “test the water”, a time to enjoy life with a purpose other than making a living.
My wife enjoys baking; cookies, cakes, and bread, and she’s really really good at it as my waistline can attest. I enjoy photography and painting and intend to hone my skills to their sharpest.
I also like to write. I don’t think I’m a great writer but I also don’t think my writing sucks. I do it for my own reward and without any obligations. I may continue to post on a regular basis or I may decide not to post for long periods of time. I do what I enjoy.
3. No Obligations Beyond Family
I have obligated myself to employers for 50+ years; years of conferences and meetings and deadlines. Our third rule is to avoid making any commitments to anyone besides family and our closest friends – at least for the short term. We don’t want to have to do anything for a while – just enjoy and take life as it comes. I think we’ve earned that.
4. Take Care of Our Physical Being
There are a lot of things in life that we cannot control. Taking care of ourselves isn’t one of them. We are continuing to age and we will eventually be dealing with the ailments brought on by our aging.
My wife and I have gym memberships plus a small gym in our condominium. We have made a commitment to each other to take care of our bodies during retirement so we have the physical and mental ability to pursue what we enjoy.
5. Try New Things
Doing something different changes the brain’s neural networking pattern, increasing our intelligence and creating positive change in our life, as Dr. Joe Dispenza has revealed through his research.
Doing new things is critical for your well-being. Some routines are crucial, like bathing, eating, brushing your teeth, and keeping your house clean, but if your life is one giant continual routine, then you may be suffering from autopilot fatigue.
6. Embrace Change
Not knowing how our lives will change after my retirement, we want embrace those changes with a positive attitude. My wife and I are free to determine where life takes us from my retirement date, and we have the freedom to change our minds.
7. Cherish Friends and Family
We will look for opportunities to build relationships, both with our families and friends, old and new. We will make time for what’s important, and realize that relationships with others are important.
8. Have Fun
Probably should have been number one but what’s the point of all this if we’re not having fun?