Retirement...that magical time when all of our dreams come true! We are conditioned to work through the prime of our lives, building up this pile of money, then when we finally reach that magical age when the kids are on their own, we get to go do aaalll the things we've dreamed of doing. You know, the pictures we've looked at for forty years on our cubicle wall hoping and waiting for.
But there's a problem, several actually. We're not as young as we used to be. The dreams we had when we were 25 are not entirely possible at 65. We contributed to our retirement fund and the stock market didn't pay out like it was supposed to. We're now on a fixed income and to qualify for the meager amount that we've stockpiled for 40 years, we're not allowed to supplement. All the dreaming and planning was for nothing.
It's a rigged system and I refuse to be part of it. I will never retire. I figured this out at age 40 and decided to screw the system and start living my life while I still could.
Here are my top 3 reasons why I won't retire and what I'm doing instead
Reason #1 Lack of Purpose
Retirees often feel a loss of purpose and report an increase in anxiety and dissatisfaction. A 2019 survey of 1000 newly retired Londoners found that the words they most commonly used to describe their lifestyle were boring, lonely, and quiet. Not exactly the golden years we have imagined.
This is why you see so many older Walmart greeters. They retired, got bored, lacked purpose in their lives, then decided to go down a familiar route and got a job. It's extremely common for retirees to go back to work. When we lack purpose, there is no motivation to live. Without the will to live, we die. It's a sad story, but very real.
Reason #2 Expectation
There is an expectation that when you retire, this means you're old and will die soon. It messes with our mindset and starts a belief that we're on the way out. This also contributes to decline in health, much like the expiration dates doctors place on people. When the doctor gives you bad news and says you most likely have X number of months left, you start believing it and it becomes true.
Reason #3 Decrease in Value
As a retiree, people tend to feel lack of purpose and value. Their worth diminishes because they no longer have a "job." As living beings, we are wired to grow and increase. If you're not growing, you're not living. If there is no value, you're worthless.
What is the solution?
When my son reached his teenage years, I realized that my worth was wrapped up in being a mother and I had forgotten my personal dreams and goals. I spent years trying to figure out what I enjoyed because so much time was spent making others happy, that I forgot myself.
Take some time to discover what lights you up and brings you joy, then start working toward your big goals early on.
Decide that your purpose is not wrapped up in your job. Your job pays the bills, it's not who you are. If you can, work for yourself and never quit.
You may have heard the term, "get into the flow," which is when things just seem to click, but what is it really?
What is FLOW?
Flow is often described as our state of mind when we are so involved in an enjoyable activity that nothing else seems to matter. A good example is getting involved in a good novel. You block out everything around you and are fully engulfed in the story.
Flow is an enjoyable experience that we tend to "fall into" by accident, but what if we could create flow around every activity in our lives to create a series of enjoyable experiences every single day? What would your life look like? Work wouldn't be boring, tedious tasks would be fulfilling, and dreaded experiences could be, well, enjoyable.
How Can We Create Flow Everyday?
While it seems simple when it "just happens," creating flow takes conscious effort to develop a habit. It is a process of achieving happiness through control over your inner life.
Your day begins the night before. It's like shutting down a computer properly. If done wrong, it tends to have bugs and crash unexpectedly. Developing a good sleep routine is important for feeling more productive and motivated the next day without unexpected crashes.
Here are a few quick tips to help you sleep better tonight for a happier tomorrow:Read more...
Exercise is a power-booster for your mood. When you grab an exercise buddy, you’re getting the full DOSE.
As you exercise, you are creating happy chemicals and the increased circulation moves them around your body, like when you put oil in your car and drive it around a bit to get it moving through the system. Your blood starts pumping and the machine works out all the kinks.
What is DOSE?
DOSE stands for Dopamine, Oxytocin, Serotonin, Endorphins. These are the mood-boosting Happy Chemicals that are created in your body to reward you with good feelings for doing something good for your survival. Here is a basic breakdown of each one:
Huggers are happier people. As a non-hugger, introvert who would rather be by myself reading a book, I can see the truth in this. I am content by myself, but content is not the same as happy. When I began to be intentional about giving hugs, it magically changed me!
We need human contact to survive
A little girl named Brittany proved this to me. When I met Brittany, she was 13 years old. She was placed in the foster care program after they found her neglected in a crib in a drug house. For FOUR YEARS she was left in that crib, never picked up and rocked, never allowed to run around. They basically propped up a bottle and left her there.
Brittany’s adopted mother was the most amazing person I’ve met. You see, Brittany was in a wheel chair and wasn’t expected to have a very long life. Her mother adopted her and committed to showing her absolute love for what little time she had left.