Ask this question to a broad cross-section of people who are about to retire and you’ll inevitably receive a wide range of responses.
For some, retirement cannot come quickly enough and they’ll have already planned meticulously for all of the things that they want to get involved in after they leave the workplace for the very last time. For others, they’ll have similar aspirations but may not be in a position to finance all of their ‘dreams’ and then there are those who see themselves defined by what job they do and haven’t really got a clue about how they’re going to fill up their days when they no longer have to go to work.
Therefore, there are many different facets to consider when you retire in terms of how you’re going to spend your time and how you’re going to finance it but assuming that you’ve got your finances in order, here are some broad suggestions.
Fulfilling Your True Potential
Many of us are not fortunate enough to have jobs which fully realise our capabilities or instil a true ‘passion’ in us. Therefore, once we retire, it’s an ideal opportunity to get involved in those projects which really capture our imagination.
Perhaps you’ve always wanted to be an artist or you’re a keen amateur photographer? What about that best selling novel you’ve always had inside you? Somewhere within us all, there is untapped potential simply waiting to be unleashed and, if you’ve no real idea what that is yet, take some time to identify all the things that inspire you and look at how you spend any leisure time now. In doing that, you’re bound to think of something that you can spend your time doing in retirement that really gives you a sense of fire in your belly.
If you’ve always marked your calendar with your holiday dates each year, perhaps now’s the time to embark on some further adventures? You’ll have been restricted by “two weeks here, a week there” when you were working but now your voyages are no longer limited by work commitments giving you the opportunity to venture even further afield, for a longer period of time and more often.
Starting Your Own Business
Maybe you’ve always dreamt of working in a different capacity – one that fuels your passion and creativity – but financial commitments have prevented you from pursuing that before now. Well, now that you’ve retired, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to stop earning a living. You might have a hobby which not only fulfils you but one from which you can also make some money out of too. From taking your guitar out on the road to selling fruit and vegetables from your gardening endeavours, you might decide to combine your leisure with a money making opportunity.
Learn New Things
As well as hobbies you actively pursue, perhaps there are other activities that you’ve always wanted to try but have, up until now, not had the time to learn how to do them. From drawing classes, learning the tango, taking a mountaineering course to enrolling in a computer class, retirement gives you a fantastic opportunity to learn new skills.
In essence, retirement should be the ‘beginning’ of your life and not perceived as nearing the end of it. You’ve possibly been defined by what you did for a living along with all of the other commitments you’ve had towards your family, for example. Retirement now gives you the chance to be the ‘real YOU’ so you should take advantage of that – be bold, be creative, be daring and above all, be yourself.