Webster dictionary defines retirement as “ withdrawal from one’s position or occupation or from active working life”.
Retirement was something I planned for and looked forward to when I was active in the corporate work world. My initial response when I retired four years ago was boredom. I had done all the financial planning and had attended several seminars about the emotional side of retirement, but I was really not prepared for the loss of daily contact with colleques and the satisfaction of jobs well done.
The first few months of retirement, I slept late, watched TV, read books and played with my grandsons. All of this activity (especially time with grandsons) is good, but I needed more. I realized that retirement needed to be better defined for me. Once retirement for me was defined, I set about developing this phase of my life.
I first established goals with my wife and we looked for ways to accomplish these goals. For us, family, faith and community were our primary goals. We also spend time every January and determine if the goals are still valid and how we did in meeting those goals the previous year.
For our goals:
We prioritized time together as a couple which includes travel to take us around the world.
We established time with family which includes a family trip each year and countless times together.
I started leading two significant ministries at the church, began participating on a church leadership team and we both volunteer in the Children’s ministry, Vacation Bible School and Outreach Activities just to name a few.
I mentor several young men both spiritually and professionally.
I became the Secretary/ Treasurer of a Non-Profit organization in my community.
I joined the neighborhood HOA committee and we invest time with our neighbors.
I am also approaching the day differently by starting early with a walk with my wife, breakfast and bible study. This organization helps better define retirement for me.
The above are only a few examples of actions taken on our goals, but they give you a glimpse into our life. God is directing our paths. These are my goals and passions; the fun of retirement is discovering your goals and passions.
I have learned that we don’t really “retire”, our life is a series of segments, some while we are in traditional jobs and some later in life. I look forward to new adventures each day. I know I am blessed to be able to devote this part of my life to my passions: family, faith and community.
Happy Trails to you as your find your place in this phase of life call “retirement”!