by Irwin Lengel
As retirees we have quite a bit of experience to share with those much younger (some not so much younger) than us.
Experience in the form of things we may have done that we thought was right at the time but now having years to see how the overall picture turned out, we find that we may have handled the situation a different way.
When one sits down and thinks about it, my educated guess is that I am sure we could come up with a list of items that might prove to be quite useful and perhaps some not so useful. Fact of the matter is though that there might be a handful of them that might just reach the top of your list and could possibly be of some worth to others going through some of the same trials and tribulations we once muddled through.
Let me point out what I am talking about here. Do you remember when you would go to work every day? What type person did you seek out and desire to be around whenever possible? The person who, in all probability, smiled a lot!
Why? Because, speaking from my own experiences, I tend to gravitate towards those that I perceive to be happy and pleasant and gravitate away from people with negative attitudes.
I had this one boss that when I would get to my worksite, the first thing I would do is pass by his secretary’s desk and ask what type of a mood he was in. If she said a “good” mood, then I would not be concerned when he would call me into his office for whatever task he was going to assign me. But, if she said a “bad” mood, I would do my best to stay out of his way the entire day.
And, if by chance, I did get called into his office on those “off” days, I had already been forewarned about the mood he was in and so I would tread lightly so to speak when responding to him.
By surrounding yourself with people that are happy and pleasant, we tend to give off the same air of contentment thus creating better relationships with people in general and such action also provides us with a strong social reputation. So, one word of advice would be to smile a lot and be nice to others as well.
As some of you may already know, I am the type person that enjoys routine things. A daily routine to me helps make my day. Not only does a daily routine help me feel good, starting out on schedule makes the balance of the day more productive because it means I am using my time wisely.
Following a routine allows me to make sure that I do not veer off course in a haphazardly direction ending up at the end of the day wondering where the day went and why I did not accomplish all I had hoped to.
So, another piece of advice would be to utilize a daily routine. Doing so (and this can be done in retirement as well) tends to allow a person to accomplish that which they want to and be happy at the same time not stressed out wondering if and when they were going to get all that had to be done accomplished.
So, another piece of advice would be suggesting that others follow a routine as it tends to allow a person to accomplish that which they want to and be happy at the same time. In this manner they would not be stressed out wondering when they were going to get all that had to be done accomplished. A routine maps out one’s plan of attack to accomplish that which they hope to do over a given period of time.
Now that we are retired, we should be able to do just what we want to do. Right – right! But, what is it that you want to do? S
it down and think about all you might have wanted to do while working but could not schedule it into your daily work plan. Then also strategize about what it is that might be making you think you cannot do it right now.
Remember, it is your life and now that you have time (remember as retirees we now have 24/7) to do that which you couldn’t work into your schedule when working. Unless a person is in a situation where their time is controlled by things out of his/her control (caretaker of a sick spouse, or grandchildren to raise, etc.), now is the time to fulfill those dreams.
We are not getting any younger. Sit down and think about what makes you happy. If writing is your passion, write daily. If reading is your passion, make it a point to read every day. Find out what you like to do and pursue it.
The piece of advice I would suggest in this instance would be to suggest to others that they should take time out of their busy lives now to find that one thing that they are passionate about and begin working it into their daily lives. In doing so, when they retire, they will not find themselves wondering what to do with that void of time that our workday took up. They will have found something that they are passionate about and that makes them say to themselves at the end of each day, “Hey, I cannot wait to get up tomorrow and get back to this!”
Another piece of advice would be to remind others that we have choices. No matter what we choose to do, will, quite possibly, come with a lot of unknowns or factors. Is what we want to do too expensive, too time-consuming, will I be able to master it?
Fact of the matter is that no matter what we choose, we will face questions such as these. But hey, no one said life would be easy – but life can be as fun as we make it. So, you are going to have to choose. How do you go about it? Well, we have all been around the block once or twice I am sure. Ever hear of good research and note-taking?
This is where one has to do a little bit of work to research that which you think you want to do. What all is involved, how long will it take, how much will it cost, and questions like that. Do you have the time, money, and fortitude to pursue your new passion?
Only you can answer these questions. Perhaps some of you reading this posting have already done this. If so, I am sure you can remember what your thought process was, what obstacles you may have had to overcome and so forth and so on. Pass this information on to those younger than you facing the same questions.
Just because we struggled does not mean that they have to and besides, it may encourage them to pass their thoughts on to those that will come behind them. After all, isn’t that what we elders are supposed to do?
Another piece of advice we could share with those coming behind us would be this – look to those individuals that we have been associated with all our lives. Chances are we will find that while we have not mimicked exactly what they have done with their lives, we tend to follow by example. If you had a co-worker that always had a nice word to say about everyone he or she came in contact with, chances are you tried to follow that same example. I remember my mother once saying to me – if you can’t say something nice about someone, don’t say anything at all. This is truly a small world. If we would all try to be happy and content with those around us and with our current lot in life, just think about how great life would be. So, go out there and share your knowledge and wisdom with others. In that manner, hopefully they will enjoy their life in retirement when the time comes as much as we do now.
Until next time!