June 25, 2024

Retirement, Are You Ready?

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Retirement, Are You Ready?

Ah yes, retirement—the grand finale of the working world and the start of a whole new adventure. In your twenties, it feels like a distant, almost mythical event. Then, one day, you blink, and suddenly, you’re blowing out candles on a retirement cake, scratching your head, and thinking, “Wait, how did this happen so fast?!”

He’s Retiring-ish

Retirement is more than just the end of a career; it’s a major milestone that signifies the beginning of a new, exciting chapter in life. As my guy (yes, Rob, that’s you) prepares to retire this week, it would be remiss of me not to celebrate the incredible journey that has brought him here and eagerly anticipate the adventures that lie ahead.

I playfully joke with him, saying, “You’re not really retiring; you’re just taking a break.” Seriously, the days of sitting on a porch in a rocking chair are over. However, sitting on a white sandy beach at an exotic destination? Now, you’re talking! Many of us define ourselves by what we do, so when work stops, it can be a very scary place.

He often reminds me, “I was a tour guide.” (I wish I had a dollar for every time he tells me this) His “tour,” aka career, spans his time as a CPA, taking him around the globe, eventually landing him as the CEO of a real estate board and finishing as the Executive Director for a nonprofit at a university campus. He has been incredibly well-rounded, and the experiences and relationships he has formed are invaluable.

Are You Ready?

It takes a lifetime of planning, and when it comes time to retire, the big question is: are you ready? Gone are the regular paycheques we’ve relied on for our entire lives. Now, we find ourselves scrutinizing spreadsheets more often, making quick calculations like a gunslinger ready to draw his weapon. We’re officially dipping into the nest egg (which is a bit scary) that has hopefully been growing over the years. It’s not unlike cutting the umbilical cord, stepping into a new world of financial independence and personal freedom, filled with excitement and a hint of uncertainty.

If you’ve been chained to a desk for a typical 9-5, or any gruelling routine for most of your career, it’s time to fill your days however you wish. I’m talking about guilt-free indulgence—no more alarm clocks, no more packed after-work gym classes, and no more rushing around, period. Instead, you can savour leisurely breakfasts, bring coffee to Llorea in bed, take up new hobbies, travel to places you’ve always dreamed of, or simply enjoy the luxury of doing nothing at all. Retirement is your time to live life on your terms, embracing every moment with the freedom you’ve earned. Sound good?

Fun Activities and Ideas For The Not So Sure

Ask yourself, and seriously, you don’t have to be strategic about this—leave strategy behind in the old boardroom. What are your hobbies, passions, and interests? Now, you finally have the luxury of time to bake those cakes for market days, play in a rock band, or write that book you’ve always dreamed of. Imagine diving into activities that bring you joy and fulfillment, free from the constraints of a tight schedule. Heck! Do it all!

Learning a new skill or returning to school to finish a degree—or even start a new one—can give you a profound sense of accomplishment and open the door to exciting opportunities. Whether it’s painting (I have a few projects in the bathrooms), gardening, or taking up a language, retirement is the perfect time to explore and expand your horizons.

Stay healthy, stay fit ; just 15-30 minutes of daily cardio can make a big difference by increasing blood flow to your brain and body. Incorporate weights for strengthening exercises to keep your bones strong and maintain muscle mass. Staying mentally active is equally important; engaging in social activities (minus the martinis) keeps our minds sharp. Consider joining clubs, taking classes, or simply spending time with friends and family. Hobbies like reading, puzzles, or tackling a new skill can also help keep your brain engaged and healthy.

Retirement Plans

Let’s just say my guy has a few plans up his sleeves. There’s a big travel adventure in the works, and we’re not stopping there. No rocking chairs or puzzles just yet—he’ll likely be busier in retirement than he ever was during his career. I better prepare myself, and get on his bus! This being his next tour, I’m curious to see where he’ll go and what new passions he’ll discover. Whether it’s exploring new countries, taking up new hobbies, or diving into volunteer work, his retirement promises to be an exciting journey.

I’m excited to be joining him, I hope I can keep up!

The comments +

  1. Alison Forbes says:

    Ahhhh, the beloved gap year!!!! Enjoy!

  2. Paulette says:

    Retirement deserves big congratulations! Cheers to new adventures. Hugs

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