“What!?” you yell Objectives? You are done achieving the goals. Throughout my entire career, I’ve needed to focus on goal setting — so much so that I decided to The only goal in retirement is not to have any goals!
You may need to rethink your strategy. McClain and Lovejoy, in their article, The importance of goal setting for retirees, note, “The first step to goal setting as a retiree is to think about what matters most in your life, so you can live with the goal” (March, 2015). In fact, setting retirement goals can help retirees stave off some of the negative effects of aging and help maintain quality of life for longer.
So, if you’re ready to revisit your ordeal toward setting goals in retirement, let’s start with one of life’s most important and meaningful facts—family.
Until now, your work life consisted of challenging juggling, trying to balance the demands of family with the demands of your career or job. Now you have the opportunity to renegotiate your time allocation according to your own values. How about giving a top priority to spending time with both immediate and distant family members — either through one-on-one time or through social media?
Yes, the family dog needs to be walked. The grandkids can be taken on those special field trips that create lasting memories. Now you have the time to plan a special and unique birthday event for your partner or kids, instead of just mailing a predictable birthday card! And don’t forget your parents – those special people who were largely responsible for the success of your life. Chances are they would welcome your weekly breakfast date.
What about your personal mental development? In their article, mental retirementRohwedder and Willis state that: “For many people, retirement results in a less stimulating daily environment … and the likelihood of retirement reduces motivation to engage in mentally stimulating activities.” The authors go on to suggest that retirees can avoid deterioration in thinking ability and mental processing speed by engaging in demanding cognitive activities that exercise the mind (October, 2010).
So if you follow the “use it or lose it” mantra, then, yes, join a local book club that offers a takeaway lunch after every meeting. Introduce yourself to that bridge group who always seems to be having fun. Hone your Sudoku skills by challenging virtual friends you’ve met online. Take a very popular gardening course at a local community college.
Better yet, offer to teach a workshop on History of rock and rollA theme that has consumed you since you were a teenager. Not only do these activities sharpen and enrich your mind, but they also provide surprisingly satisfying social connections.
If you have always believed that it is slander that benefits the most from any altruistic endeavor, recipient or giver, you will find ample opportunity to give back to your community by volunteering your time, talents, or material resources towards laudable causes, while stimulating your mind at the same time.
Offer to teach children within your local school district. Keep in mind, any number of Boomers would welcome your help with tax preparation or how to create a family slideshow in PowerPoint. If you live in the city, your local museum, theater, or hospital will eagerly embrace your volunteering of your time and talents. And in turn, imagine what you will learn in the process in any of these places. Hence the paradox: “The more you give, the more you get.”
Your travel options are plentiful. Go on your own and explore every nook and cranny of your chosen destination at your leisure. Choose an organized tour and leave all the details and decision making to your preferred travel organization. Whatever option you choose, you will need to weigh its pros and cons. But, without a doubt, you will find your choice to travel to be refreshing, enriching, and even, in many cases, life-changing. Travel takes you outside your comfort zone, challenges your conventional ideas, allows you to experience new cultures, and, inadvertently or not, opens up new windows for self-discovery.
The first time I stood at the foot of a waterfall in a small Swiss village, the lump in my throat revealed so many mixed feelings…that I’d never been able to share this moment of fullness with people back home. In fact, there are many great destinations outside of the USA. That I would be forever changed for the better by my first trip to Europe, and every trip that followed.
“Without work—or goals to replace the purpose that work gives you—you have little to motivate you” (McLain and Lovejoy, 2015). Having said that, keep in mind that you are now in the enviable position of being able to completely reconsider and renegotiate your “Terms of Work”.
Back off and “Aim, Aim, Aim” before firing. Set your goal consciously and reflectively. Will you continue to do the same type of work you did before you retired? Full time or part time? Or will you pursue a completely different path of “work”—one that satisfies a latent talent or interest in disguise? Maybe you’re considering venturing into the world of entrepreneurship – instead We take chief or leader, being President. It’s your choice.
How much of your creative side have you devoted to the practical demands of making a dependable living, supporting and raising a family, establishing yourself and moving up the ladder? But that was then and this is now. Did you ever love writing? to represent? to make pottery? To create watercolors of spring flowers? Has your saxophone been tucked away in the closet since you graduated from college? Is the singing voice that once won you the best solos in your high school choir rusty from disuse? Did you leave your love for woodworking a long time ago? Or weave? Or quilting? Or restore classic car engines?
You probably haven’t had time for any of those, yet. So, you don’t even know if you’ll be talented at what you’ve always wished you had the chance to create. No problem. It just means that the time has come now to start. Creation is its own form of pleasure. Expressing yourself through words, oils, canvas, clay or wood gives voice to your inner spirit like nothing else ever did or wanted.
If you’ve already learned the skills to be chosen for the creative niche, reconnect with what you know, learn more, and move forward with passion. If you’ve always dreamed of creating, but never learned how, set yourself on the path of studying, developing your art or craft, and then enjoying what you can achieve with your own mind and hands.
You have the great luxury of setting your own goals
Yes, now that you’re retired, you have the luxury of setting meaningful goals Youdriven b for you Definition of “a life well lived”. Experts agree that we all do better when we have a purpose in life, and that a lack of goals can put our lives at risk after retirement.
Whether your goals in retirement revolve around family, personal self-development, giving to others, travel, “work,” creation—or some combination of these things—they promise to keep you in good stead as you enter life’s final, hopefully, best authorship.