Recently Kobe Bryant admitted that he was scared of retiring from professional basketball. I think he’ll end up being OK since he has enough money to buy a small country, and commissioning statues of yourself to display in village squares can keep you occupied for a while. But I’ll admit, if I were suddenly in the position of not needing to work, it would take me a few months to figure out what to do with myself. I’d probably start things off by taking a nice long nap, but that’d only get me to lunch.
Figuring out what to do without the order that a workday imposes upon us is a real challenge. The average retired person watches 48 hours of television a week – that’s 7 hours a day – presumably because they simply don’t know how to fill their suddenly empty hours. And I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to live my golden years spending my entire day complaining that there’s nothing good to watch.
So if you’re trying to figure out what to do as your retirement approaches, keep these 6 ideas in mind.
The connections you’ve made during your career are worth money to the right people, and leveraging those connections is not in any way an indelicate or immoral thing to do. If you’re not ready to give up working just yet, or if you think you’ll still need some income, consider transitioning into a part-time consultant.
The older we get, the more certain we are that the world is going to hell – kids today have no respect and weird haircuts and listen to bad music and all that. So do something about it. Find a cause you’re interested in, figure out where their offices are located, and walk in the front door. You’ll walk out with a new purpose.
Which doesn’t need to involve long flights or expensive hotels. There are dozens of things within 50 miles of where you live that you’ve never seen. And some of them will even be interesting!
Or sculpt, or knit, or weld, or learn French, or construct a giant pumpkin cannon in your garage. There’s got to be something you’re interested in, right? And the more challenging it is, the less bored you’re likely to be.
Even if you haven’t done it in the last 20 years. You’ve got the time now, and I would love to see a few more 65-year-olds in kickboxing classes.
For whatever you believe in. If you think the country is going the wrong direction, you can run for office or support another candidate; and if you think your neighborhood park needs cleaning up, you can do it yourself or solicit others to help you.
Retirement doesn’t have to be terrifying. It can (and should) be one of the more rewarding times of your life. Although I doubt you’ll think so if you end up watching 48 hours of TV a week. So do something already!