By Jay Forte, Coach, Author, Educator
I just turned 60. I have no intention of retiring anytime soon because, not only do I love what I do, but I can easily fit being a coach into the life that I want.
But we’re here to talk about you. As you start to approach or achieve retirement, how do you want to use your days?
Many people believe retirees spend all their time engaging in leisure activities, moving south to warmer climates and generally just slowing things down. If this makes life great for you, terrific! Go do it.
However, simply ending work isn’t always an easy or satisfactory step into retirement because most Boomers came from a period of great work intensity. Shifting to a new way of thinking about ourselves and our lives requires intentional thought.
I believe a successful starting point is to redefine the word retirement. Instead of thinking of it as “not working,” think of it as “a more intentional and planned use of your time.”
So how do you structure this next phase of life around what matters to you?
To feel healthy and live a life that matters, we all need purpose. Celebrity host Dr. Oz said, “If your heart doesn’t have a reason to beat, it generally won’t.” What matters to you can guide you to what’s next for you. It’s called purposeful living.
Consider these scenarios:
If you need to continue to work. What work will give you the social connection you want and the financial resources and/or medical benefits you need? How will what you do align to what you are good at and interested in doing? What opportunities align to your stamina, health, location and sense of community?
If you don’t need to work, but want to work. What type of work, schedule and environment will activate your sense of purpose and self-value? What contribution do you want to still make? What pressure does this take off you, and how does this allow you to choose the work more intentionally? What impact do you want to have?
If you don’t need to work. What passions can be engaged? What interests will help you feel that each day of life is exciting, meaningful and valuable? What can you share with others that you are interested in or an expert at? Where are the places for you to connect to make an impact and feel part of something valuable?
At any age, life gives you a blank slate each day from which you create what you want. Many people don’t intentionally and purposefully direct their choices, often resulting in their doing things that don’t align to their abilities and interests, or worse, make them feel stuck or afraid of change.
What is required is a thoughtful consideration of who you are – what you are good at, passionate about and what matters to you – and a review of the opportunities that connect to who you are. This is how any of us, at any point in our lives, can start to answer the question, “what’s next?”
This is a particularly critical question for Boomers to ask themselves to continue to direct and own their lives to make wise decisions and live life like it matters.
Consider engaging with me as your Life Coach to talk about what matters to you and what your next chapter can hold for you.