Many think of retirement as an end. The end of a career. The end of being vital and engaged. The end of being valuable to others.
It’s a mentality shared by almost everyone. From college students about to enter the workforce to those in their mid-60s. Those who are close to submitting their final resignation letters.
The common thinking is that retirement is a phase of life after you’ve given your best. Most people think it’s a phase where you discontinue working to spend the rest of your days doing nothing.
I tend to think that even after you’ve submitted your last resignation letter, your best days are still ahead of you.
Don’t throw it to the wind
Think about it.
For most people, their careers start in their 20s, even late teenage years. Most people are looking to retire when they’re in their late 50s to mid-60s. This is a lengthy period of time in which people accumulate deep skill and an abundance of knowledge.
Subscribing to the common perception of retirement where people stop working and then do nothing, means 30 to 40-years worth of experience is thrown to the wind. It’s an invaluable resource being wasted and it’s a loss for everyone.
Life goes on after retirement
I’m now in my 50s.
I see retirement very differently to how most see it. And I don’t feel there’s any need to fear it or feel unhappy about it. I believe retirement is really a chance at a new beginning. It’s only the end of one phase.
Life goes on after retirement. It’s not the end of everything. Modern medicine tells us if we look after ourselves, watch what we eat and maintain a positive attitude towards life, we can all live to 100.
The greatest years are ahead of you
Do the math. If you retire from your career at the average age of 60-something you still have 30 to 40 years ahead of you. This is almost the same amount of time you would have spent in your previous career.
Doing nothing for 30 to 40 years is the quickest way of deteriorating your mind and your spirit.
What we really need to do is acknowledge that with our abundance of life experience, knowledge and skill, the next 30 to 40 years is going to be the greatest of our lives.
Just because the world’s changed doesn’t mean you have no value
It’s true that technology is changing business practices around the world at breakneck speed. It’s not going to stop either.
What we need to remember is technology is what allows us to do business in newer, faster and more efficient ways. Technology is just a tool.
The core principles of business have been around since the beginning of time and will remain true for many years to come. Business is still business. And your 30 to 40 years’ worth of accumulated experience is still invaluable to younger generations.
Ready for a new chapter?
Are you getting close to retirement age? Are you concerned about having nothing to do? Stop worrying.
All you need to do is repurpose what you know and put it back into the world in a new way. Repurpose your strengths and your advantages so you’re of the greatest value to younger generations.