Originally posted at change masters , by Tom Mungavan.
I went to a reunion of a group from my IBM days … long, long ago. Many of my peers were retired and talking a lot about golf. When asked when I am retiring, the honest answer is “Probably never” unless I lose my health. Truth is, most days, I love what I do more than I love golf. I like making a difference in the world and spending time with really smart and competent people.
I listened to a dinner speaker yesterday who talked about “Retirementality” that really resonated with me … and many others in the room.
Doing something you love to do rather than “retiring at a certain age” is an option worth considering. It may be the work you do now or the work you choose to do next. It may be part-time and it may not create a pay check. That is OK. If you enjoy the work you do, why stop?
I recently started working on my 25 year plan. My wife smiled and said “That’s Tom”. The fact that I need to live to age 95 to complete the plan is of only small note. It will take that long to do all the things I know I want to do today. Mitch Anthony is author of “The New Retirementality” that challenges the concept of a retirement age as a left over concept from the Industrial Revolution.
“If you are engaged in things that bring value to others and is meaningful to you – why stop?”
Most competent people I know flunk retirement. In 12 to 18 months of leisure, they are looking for a way to make a contribution again. Anthony suggests looking at what you don’t like and eliminating it from your “work” and spend time on what you do like. He provides many examples and approaches to thinking about what you choose to do.
The five “C’s” of aging:
However you spend your time … Anthony shows that health and happiness has vitamin “C” in the form of:
Connectivity – Stay connected to people you love, enjoy, and who value you. Result is being happier and healthier.
Challenge – Dementia is delayed by actively challenging yourself mentally – doing more than crossword puzzles.
Curiosity – There is so much to learn and do. Embrace it for happiness and vigor.
Creativity – Many artists do their best work in the 80’s and 90’s. Embrace creativity to build on your history.
Charity – Many studies have shown that generous people live longer and are more healthy.
If golf or other activities are what make like meaningful for you … by all means … do it with gusto. For me, I want to continue to work hard at what I love to do and play hard for the foreseeable future. I want the world to be a better place when it is time for me to exit this world. There is still much to be done.
Anthony calls it Return on Life (ROL) rather than the financial ROI. He calls it making the best life on the money you have.