When I say why you will never retire to someone, I often get a sad and puzzled look. Sad because quite often they assume that may be a reality for them or already is, and others are puzzled wondering why in the world I would make such a statement.
Let’s spend a few moments in this article explaining exactly what I mean, and pointing out some significant reasons why not retiring is not a bad thing at all. In the first place, as the “Un-Retired Entrepreneur”, I think it is a very overrated concept. Let’s dig into this a bit more.
What Age Do People Retire?
Now when we ask this question we can get all sorts of answers. There are people who have retired young as a result of either some windfall like an inheritance, or they invested their money wisely, or built and sold a business. There are many reasons people retire at different ages.
But when we ask this question people are most likely thinking about social security, retirement accounts, pensions, and how to calculate the best time to retire while being able to manage financially and not run out of money. I covered quite a bit of this stuff in a prior article called When Do Babby Boomers Retire?, which gives quite a bit of information related to what we are discussing and offering some viable options.
The point that I am stressing here is that age does not matter at all. It is the quality of life each step of the way. Being totally engaged in what we are doing each day is a critical factor.
In this regard, if we are in a job we dislike, our next step is to outline a strategy to locate another job or start a business that aligns with what we actually want to do. If we are not sure what we desire to do, then our next step is to spend some time to “pause and reflect” on where we truly desire to go with our lives.
This is not brain surgery or high-level math, but it does require us to slow down a bit from our everyday crazy routines and numerous distractions of which technology plays a big part, and spend some quiet time alone with ourselves. This in itself would be a major accomplishment for many of us.
Why Plan Retirement in the First Place?
“I haven’t quite got the hang of this retirement thing.”
“I wanted to have more time to play and reflect, but I find retirement more stressful than having a nice, steady job because I have to make decisions about where I want to be.”
It seems like we are indoctrinated about retirement from many directions for most of our lives. For some, it’s important to create tons of money to live a desired lifestyle and have the choice to retire early. For others, it’s more about putting money away for a rainy day to ensure a financially secure retirement later in life. Business opportunities exploit this as part of their sales message, and there is no lack of financial investments offered by companies, fiduciaries, and financial planners in order to “secure” one’s future.
By no means am I saying this is at all bad. But what I am saying is that security comes from “within” and non “without”, and once we are aligned with our true purpose and core values, things fall into place naturally as a result of taking constructive action toward our objectives. This is based on growth rather than fear.
Planning for retirement should not be our main objective, but something that naturally occurs as we pursue meaningful goals, no matter our present age. When we are constantly involved with serving others with quality services and/or products, our financial situation is already secure. I was never more or less secure because of my financial condition, whether I had plenty of funds or not. Money is plentiful and always available as needed. As we expand ourselves our awareness grows, and we vibrate at a level that opportunities just show up effortlessly. At this point living an abundant lifestyle becomes a reflection of who we are within.
In the Baby Boomer section of this blog, you can find numerous articles that address most challenges related to retirement. If I have missed any you may be experiencing, put your question in the comment section or email me directly using the contact form. Life is to be enjoyed as we find meaningful ways to contribute to others and the world. We are all very special folks with much to offer. It is good to remind ourselves of that quite often.
Who Invented Retirement? — Why You Will Never Retire
“Those who are disabled from work by age and invalidity have a well-grounded claim to care from the state.”
Otto von Bismarck made this statement back in the 1880s. He was a German statesman who was trying to get a handle on the high unemployment among young folks, so he wanted to pay those seventy (70) years old or older to leave the workforce. Soon thereafter many more countries followed Germany’s example and set up retirement for people sixty-five (65) to seventy (70) years old.
Back then the average lifespan was only around seventy (70), while now it is much longer. With all the fear-based media these days surrounding the ideal of retirement, many people feel they may never get to retire (which I feel is a good thing anyway).
In Okinawa, people live about seven (7) years longer than folks in the USA, and they do not suffer from many of the health challenges we have here. There are nutritional and social habits that contribute to this as they eat less but healthy, and have grown up within a strong social framework that supports this type of lifestyle throughout life.
These people would not even consider the idea of retirement or not working at all. It is such a foreign concept to them that they cannot even conceive of it. They have a term, ikigai, that translates as “the reason to wake up in the morning”. And that is exactly what “purpose” is all about. When we are aligned with our purpose and values we have a reason to get up as we “know” we are making a difference. We are eager to begin the day.
When we are purpose-driven, we have better health and a stress-free lifestyle. That does not mean we have no challenges with which to deal, but instead of resisting those challenges, we embrace them as well as the uncertainty that is a part of the package.
When we are challenged each day, have a strong social group with similar interests, are always learning and expanding, we structure our lives in a way to support our high-level purpose. With this type of mindset, there is no fear related to being able to retire, as we are far better off not retiring.
Why You Will Never Retire — Retirement is Overrated
The key point being no matter what our specific circumstances may be, regardless of our financial status, there is never a good reason to retire as long as we are in good health, and have discovered a compelling reason to enjoy life and contribute. By operating from the creative plane of life, we are able to position ourselves to make a positive difference.
We can create any type of lifestyle that we desire beginning right now. Learning how to merge our efforts within all departments of our lives, we are laser-focused in a way that supports the expression of our talents in new and innovative ways. At this point, we are enjoying life to such an extent that our levels of enthusiasm and joy create the momentum that propels us to our goals and objectives. Traditional forms of retirement are not given any consideration.
There is something within each and every one of us that is seeking to emerge and express itself. It is like we have on a straitjacket and are unable to move. When we feel stuck, we are often not aware of the alternatives available to us. Expanding our mindset allows us to venture out and explore new and exciting possibilities. This leads to igniting our hearts so that our emotions kick in to fuel our journey.
When we are operating on all cylinders so to speak, we engage fully in all areas of life, taking pride in completing the most insignificant task with thoroughness and excellence. We pay attention to our health for selfish reasons so that we can continue to excel and make a difference. At this point, our spirit is aligned with efforts, and our outer results are a reflection of what we are within.
The reason why you will never retire is that life is precious, and each moment is to be appreciated for what it offers. This very moment is where our point of power resides ready to release more of our potential. By letting go and releasing our resistance to excellence, we are positioned to lead high performance, world-class lives. As a result of creating a high functioning “inner empire” filled with vitality and nobility, we are now able to create our outer empires as well.
Based on this, you may agree that retirement is a bit overrated. Once we take our foot off the brakes, we will pleasantly surprise ourselves as to how much joy there is to experience right this very moment. Many are tired of traditional ideas of retirement, would much prefer the excitement of an “un-retired lifestyle”.
If you need some assistance along the way to break free from the “same old stuff”, check out my article on “Getting Stuff Done” and taking the Next Step.
May you enjoy life one precious moment at a time,
The Un-Retired Entrepreneur
“When you love what you do why retire?”
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