Many people anticipate boredom, misery and uselessness in retirement. In fact, many people are living this kind of retirement right now. These fears often weigh people down and actually stand in the way of enjoying a fulfilling and happy retirement. But you dont have to be one of the people dreading retirement. You can take charge of your life right now and start moving toward the exciting life you dream about for your retirement years.
If you deliberately take just five steps in the right direction, you can be on the path to making retirement the very best years of your life. I know some people say the best years of our lives are in our youth. But I am here to tell you from personal experience that the best time of your life can actually be those years in the prime of your life.
Take these five steps to set yourself on the path to firing up your retirement:
STEP #1: Find a new focus for your life. We simply are not a generation that will be content sitting in a rocking chair watching a cat sleep. We want more from life. So decide what makes you happy. Decide what gives you a sense of purpose and meaning in life. Choose what you want and make it happen.
STEP #2: Expand your connections with others. Staying home alone in front of a TV is just not good for you. You need to be connected to other people. So, get off the couch or out of the chair and go find ways to spend time with people you know and build connections with people you dont yet know. Join a group or a club or get involved in a sport or other activity. Go where the people are and make connections.
STEP #3: Keep learning new things. Learning keeps us connected and vital. Learning keeps us young in spirit. Learning keeps the mind sharp and engaged with life. Think of something you have often wanted to learn more about, but never had time. Think of something you could learn and then use to benefit others. Go learn and, by learning, grow.
STEP #4: Make a difference and give back. When you get involved in the community in some meaningful way you reap countless benefits. Not only will you help someone else, you will help yourself by engaging in purposeful and rewarding activity. You have knowledge and experience. You have causes that you care about passionately. You can make a difference. Get out there and change lives.
STEP #5: Organize your life to achieve happiness. Im not just talking about getting organized. Im suggesting that when we organize our lives we get things in perspective and in balance. This allows us to keep our focus on the things that matter most to us and pursue our dreams. When we focus on what is most important to us, we dont waste time chasing things that just fill time. When we pursue what matters most to us with focus, we find happiness.
I promise you that when you take these five steps you will be on the path to a fired up retirement lifestyle. These steps can take you beyond your fears about retirement and give you the assurance that the second stage of your life will have purpose and pizzazz.
Copyright 2007 by Dr. Cynthia Barnett