by Bhaj Townsend
I know more and more people who are nearing retirement. Unlike the pictures in the ads which show retirees having the time of their life, these people are frightened about what lays ahead. Instead of seeing freedom to choose and joy of life, they fear lack of schedules, and commitments, lack of purpose and meaning. Retirement seems a large, dark chasm into which they are about to fall. This is not exciting to them.
Yes, they know they will do some traveling, get that bucket list taken care of and catch up on activities they didn’t previously have time for but for the most part, they are dreading their retirement. The loss of community for some is frightening. The loss of relevancy is hard to deal with for others.
Most retirees casually walk into their retirement without a plan or preparation beyond the dollars and cents to exhaust. Then, because very little has been prepared other than an initial bucket list, they soon settle into mindless routines. According to Shell Oil and University of Zurich, who have studied the effects of retirement on their population, this happens within 18 months of retiring. Those who were uber excited feel isolated. Those fearing retirement have their fears about their irrelevancy confirmed. Retirement is no fun.
Without knowing what you want in and from your retirement, you are more likely to drift once your initial honeymoon or vacation period is over. It’s natural.
There are tools and systems to help give your life meaning and purpose in retirement as well. When you live your retirement as a mission rather than a pause before the end, you will feel your life fire up again. Instead of retreating into irrelevancy you will find satisfaction and personal significance.
As one of our clients said: “The process you have, Bhaj, gave me the key to what was missing. My feelings of isolation and irrelevancy are gone. I feel significant and valuable again. I am connected to life for life.”
Contact us if you want the same feeling of purpose and meaning in your retirement.