Over the holidays it has been fun re- connecting with old friends. Because many of us are of a certain age, retirement was a consistent topic of conversation.
While some were embracing the thought of no longer working and the freedom that retirement offers, others of us were more nervous. Would being put out to pasture turn into a slow, pathway to that final journey? Would we be bored?
Much I am sure depends on your interests and hobbies, and I can see for those who have been all- consumed with work and did little outside of it, this could be a scary prospect.
So much of our identity is tied up in what we do, rather than who we are. So letting go of that identity, prompts fears of becoming invisible; of disappearing and no longer being of value.
It seems to me that retirement, like any major life change, needs to be planned and a transition strategy put in place, so you can ease into this new world and have activities lined up that will keep the brain working and your physical health in good shape.
Like everything, it is your attitude that will make the difference and keeping your mind and body active bodes well for the productive years ahead.
But you know, just because you reach a certain age, it shouldn’t be a given or assumed that you’re going to suddenly retire and stop working.
The ideal situation, my friend and I fantasized, would be to continue working on the pieces of the job we enjoyed, even take on new projects, so the new guard could establish themselves without too much interference from us, and we could just be on call – when we weren’t travelling, of course. Sounds ideal, right?
Time will tell, but succession planning shouldn’t be avoided just because you’re not ready to let go. It takes time and you want to think it through so it is a win- win for everyone.
by Anne Day