In his article “We need a sense of purpose to live” Seth Barnes, the author of “Kingdom Journeys” The lost spiritual discipline, said:
The most important thing you need to make it through life is a sense of purpose.
Without purpose, people lose their inner spark, their will to live.
You see this dynamic manifest in older couples. When one dies, the other frequently dies shortly thereafter.
So Why Do People Need a Purpose in Life?
In my recent article “Why Having The Right Mindset Is The Most Important Secret For Successful Aging”
I argued that the right mindset for successful aging is “to consciously choose to live a long, active and healthy life, to continue to contribute to society, to nurture your close social relationships and to willingly share the Lets be honest? knowledge and wisdom you possess with other people.”
In other words, we all need a real sense of purpose in life to make it truly meaningful and enjoyable; to maintain our passion for life and our sense of identity.
Let’s be honest. If you don’t have a purpose-however big or small, what’s the point?
During our working lives we had a clear sense of purpose; growing our careers, bringing up our families, and our relationship with our partner.
Now the career has ended, our children are probably grown up, and busy living their own lives, and our relationship with our partner will inevitably need to be redefined as we spend much more time together than we ever have in the past.
For many mature people, me included, our career has been a key determinant of our self worth, family esteem, our personal identity and our standing in the community.
The rapid drop off in energy experienced by many people who worked full time from age 60 to 70 is caused by stopping work; i.e. by RETIREMENT.
Retirement is voluntary or involuntary unemployment for up to 30-35 years. Many retirees are left with little or no physical or mental activity and a complete loss of purpose, which can have catastrophic effects on their health and well-being.
So “retiring” is not the end, it is actually a new beginning, a chance to develop dormant talents and start a new life for the next 30-35 years; and what you make of that new beginning is completely, in your hands.
I think that’s exciting, don’t you?
Wow! what will you do with those extra years that I have called our “third life phase”?
I am sure that most of us will want to do some or all of the following:
- spend more quality time with our family,
- travel to the places we have dreamed of,
- renovate our homes or move to a smaller more manageable home,
- just relax more and reduce our stress levels, and
- spend more time on our hobbies and passions.
But that’s not going to keep many of us happy and fulfilled for 30-35 years! For those of us who have always led a busy life, with a responsible job, about which we were conscientious and caring, we won’t want to just stop. Indeed, in terms of our potential life expectancy, that could be a very bad thing to do.
We will need something to maintain our sense of purpose, and as there is a good chance we will live longer than we may have expected, it would be ideal if that new purpose provided additional income.
So how can we maintain our sense of purpose and our passion for life, as well as keeping some additional income flowing in to supplement our savings and pension?
In my article How Baby Boomers Are Revolutionizing Retirement, I talked about a number of options, and in particular finding a mutually beneficial way to continue working with your existing employer beyond their normal retirement age.
The other big change that has created many more exciting opportunities is the “internet revolution”
The internet has given us the means to communicate and do business directly with 68% of the 1.2 million people that live in North America. Europe and Australasia, and 34% of the world’s 7 million people (source: http://www.internetworldstats.com/), and that figure is growing rapidly.
For those of us who speak English, there are some 93 countries where English is widely spoken and read, so we have a potential market beyond our wildest dreams. International boundaries are no longer a barrier to doing business.
You can’t beat it, so embrace it and use it to your own advantage.
It’s open to everyone with a computer and an internet connection. So we now have many more options than ever before available to choose from.
I will elaborate on these in detail in future articles and updates.
At age 60, with 30-35 years of active life ahead of you, I believe many of you will want to go back to school, to study for a second career, possibly something completely different from your first career. Could it be that your “retirement” might be taking a year or two off from work to re-educate yourself for your new careers? Going back to school can now be as simple as turning on your computer and connecting to the internet.
I will leave you with two more great quotes:
“A sense of purpose is reached when people perceive their current activities as relating to future outcomes, so that current events draw meaning from possible future conditions.” – Baumeister RF. – Meanings of life. New York: Guilford Press; 1991.
“The mystery of human existence lies not in just staying alive, but in finding something to live for.” – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
If you have a clear purpose for your retirement years, either in the planning stage, or even better, if you are already living it, please leave me a comment below. Maybe we could share your story with our fellow travellers and inspire them on their journey?
I have recently released my updated free eBook “How to Create Your Personalised Blueprint For a Long, Healthy and Wealthy Retirement Life” which covers all the topics in the Design Your New Life 4 Part System including how to earn additional income in your retirement years.
If you haven’t already done so, you can download your personal copy by clicking on the link below:
This report provides a helpful overview of what you will learn in-depth, if you join my new program “Blueprint for a long, healthy and wealthy retirement life”
Last Updated October 2018 Copyright © 2014 designyournewlife.com, a division of DA Web Enterprises Pty Ltd