In my practice as a Resume Writer & Career Coach, I've dealt with clients who, after a year of retirement, wanted to return to the workplace. They realized that they were not ready to retire for good, after all. One client told me, "I was so excited and had a list of things to do, but I did them all in a year. Now what?"
The problem is not so much the premature retirement or the lack of preparedness for it, but the misconceptions about retirement.
Retirement is simply quitting the job you've been doing for years to pursue something more meaningful and rewarding. This is more than working on a hobby that you've been wanting to do for so long, or traveling to places you've been dreaming to go to, or seeing people you've not seen in years. All these things will grow old.
Retirement then is more of a transition than 'quitting'. It is a pursuit of something that will replace the job you've been doing for years ... a less stressful but more enjoyable one.
Do you have stories to tell? Publish a book!
Do you have arts and crafts to sell? Set-up an online store and ask your son or daughter to help you, or hire someone who can teach you or even do it for you. You can also set up your own store.
Are you good in training or teaching others? Set up an online course or look for part-time teaching/training gigs.
In short, use the very skills and passion you have to not only keep you busy but to help others, and also to make money from. Invest your retirement funds in a way that will bring in more increase, not just to keep you entertained.
One of the sub-principles I shared in my book, Simplify to Intensify, is the concept of multiplication. Under the Chapter, Befriending Time, I wrote, "When the resources were utilized, the reproduction happened."
Two of the major reasons why people are not ready to retire, or desire to go back to work after retiring for a year or so is: need for financial security; and lack of productive things to do.
Productivity naturally happens when there is passion and love for what we do because the work in itself simply follows what we do to it. The way the potter is to the clay is a good analogy I can give. If the potter is simply consumed with making money out of the clay he makes, that pressure to make money will affect the way he feels towards the clay, which affects his ability to mold the clay and how the clay will respond to his 'molding'. On the other hand, if the potter is simply focused on his love for pottery, peace and joy will rule in his heart and mind, which will affect the way he molds the clay, and which the clay will respond to. As a result, the final product will be a beautiful work of art that will be worth a price.
The same advice I give to my clients is the same advice I will give to you now if you are in this situation of not knowing if you're ready to retire, or you already retired and saying ... "what now"?.
Find what you love to do and good in doing. I'm not talking about a hobby you want to learn or pursue. That will take time. You can still do that, and who knows? Maybe you can focus on it in the future. But for now, focus on what you love to do and you're actually good at it, or have the skills for it. Remember, it has to be both "love-passion" and "skills-ability". Pursue this as a new job or start a business.
If you are thinking of retirement, now is the time to plan for this. Invest your money not only where it will grow but where you and the money will grow. This is where the process of multiplication happens ... a multiplication not only of your investment but also of your well-being, which is more important than silver or gold.
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