Retirement Goal

To be fair a week of vacation spent getting my spirit back to it’s usual glow is not at all like retirement. However, the way I spent my vacation made me a bit worried for future me. I spent a lot of time doing sedentary activities (knitting, reading, watching movies) and not enough being truly active or properly feeding my mind. I even skipped reading other blogs!

As you may recall I suffer with anxiety and occasionally a thought needs very little feeding to become a full fledged worry. So my week of coasting brought a momentary cause for concern as I am clearly going to become one of those frail ladies who suffers from constant pain due to her lack of exercise and loses her mind because she’s reading romance novels instead of learning a new skill. Extreme? Yes!

Thankfully I was able to bring my concern for Future Me to a reasonable level. I realized that my experience with retirees were my grandparents, people who volunteered, and a few family friends. They all have very different experiences. My grandfather was ill so my grandmother was his main caretaker, she is now rather bored as she is ill, has poor eyesight and doesn’t get out very much. Those who volunteered with the organization I worked with were often fairly active and traveled a great deal.  I found a number of them used volunteer activities to remain active citizens within the community and we definitely benefited from them. The current crop of family friends are a mixed bag. Some are living comfortably, some are struggling with the loss of income, and others are treating it like a lifetime of summer vacation.

I’m a planner. I wanted to be debt free so I laid it out for myself, I wanted to stop living in clutter so I created work plans and experimented until I have the life I like. I want to be the type of retiree who can fill my life and mind. I don’t want to be brought low by pain or chronic illness. As this is my goal  there are some definite things I can start doing or maintain:

  • Exercise – I know I’m not alone but I need to ensure that I keep moving.
  • Eating healthy – I do an alright job on this right now but I can definitely see room for improvement.
  • Hobbies – I’ve taken up knitting and I love that I continue learning new stitches. I need to keep pushing myself to discover new things and explore. I often let my perfectionism and need for things to be useful get in the way of enjoyment.
  • Mental exercises –  In uni I was addicted to crosswords and Sudoku now I can barely get one done. There’s loads of mental puzzles I can find for free on the internet or rather cheaply in stores.
  • Budget – I’ve done fairly well here and by continuing to do so I’m giving myself the knowledge that I will be able to enjoy my later years not worrying about financial woes.
  • Home maintenance – My home is already quite low maintenance. It’s a raised bungalow so much of the living space is on one floor. We’re doing fairly well keeping it up but I want new additions to be things that are easy to continue. This means no fussy gardens or elaborate pictures that require special dusting.
  • Getting involved – I’m always torn as I want to be more involved in the community but after working I want to just relax. An acquaintance of mine had explained to me that he was embedding himself into his new community by creating consistencies. He goes to the same place for a weekly breakfast, he has joined a few teams, and makes sure to attend local events. He advises that by becoming a familiar face people begin to accept him as a member of the community. That sort of getting involved I can do. I’ve spoken to ML about making a commitment to dating each other more often and engaging in those sorts of activities. We’ll be able to have fun doing something other than binge watching Netflix while meeting other people in the community. The few times we’ve done it we’ve had a blast!

 

What would you add to this list?

Image from here

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10 thoughts on “Retirement Goal

  1. Wonderful! I’m glad you were able to pull yourself back from the anxiety and take control in the way you do best – planning! Keep in mind that there might be some things you simply won’t do until you actually do retire, because there just aren’t enough hours in the week. For example, don’t beat yourself up for not doing sudoku’s if you are getting plenty of mental stimulation from work, but just keep it in your “retirement plan” list so you remember to take up that activity one day! What about making some plans for travel and experiences? Thinking about whether you want to take regular weekend trips away, or whether you want to do a big international travel to a new country once a year, or whether you might do something exciting like doing back to back house exchanges! Do you imagine yourselves to be the eccentric and adventurous 60s is the new 40s retirees, or the cute little old couple that’s a friendly face in the neighbourhood? These are some fun questions to ponder!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, great points!
      I love the idea of a list of activities to do ‘one day’. I may call it a rainy day plan and use it to stave off those moments when I have ‘nothing to do’ and turn mindlessly to Facebook rather than living my own life :).

      Those are fun plans to ponder! House exchanges sound grand and we`d love to travel internationally.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Rather than add to the list, I would suggest mastering it. Learning how to consistently succeed and achieve offers guidance to future solutions. When I hear people saying, “I could be doing better,” I typically think “probably not (at this moment,) or else you would be.” When true obstacles interfere with our path, detours are certainly needed. When we turn out to be our own obstacles, we need to face reality. Life is wonderful, but, oh so challenging. Mastering an attitude and ALWAYS finding and pursuing a path to succeed requires overcoming the “should have,” “could have,” and “would have fragmented thinking. We must ask ourselves, “how committed am I to attaining my goal?”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It took me a a bit to reply because this is a comment filled with too much good advice.
      It made me look at my recent lists and realize that I need to take a holistic look at my life again. I’m a planner, so when I started this blog I had done taken a hard look at myself and figured out four points that really resonated with me. It turns it’s time to undertake that exercise again. That exercise and subsequent post was a great touch point this year and helped me achieve the mindset I wanted.

      I think another journey, now that I’ve identified and begun working through some mental blocks, will be helpful in mastering some new skills.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. It’s great that you are taking time to reflect on areas of your life that you can improve on. Periodic cycles of review and modify is needed for a successful and fulfilling life. The alternative is letting life direct you and your emotions which would be a a roller coaster ride of highs and lows. Thanks for sharing your goals.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Pingback: Revisiting My Lists – Saving Without Scrimping

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