Are you living your perfect day?
It’s one thing to talk about an outrageous retirement lifestyle. It’s another thing altogether to have one. It isn’t that living full out is hard. The rewards alone more than justify the work it takes. The big problem is that society doesn’t expect or encourage stepping our of the normal patterns. Society doesn’t provide inspiration or encouragement. Older people are treated like cute irrelevancies, amusing at first but then just a drag on your time and attention. Modern society likes tidiness. There is a place for everything and by golly, everything should just stay in it’s place. For seniors, that place is the retirement community, a refuge for old people that keeps them away from the real world and keeps them diverted with mindless activities and spared from the responsibilities of normal life and frees up regular folks to go about their business.
Don’t make waves – or trouble!
Even when seniors resist the call of the retirement community, nobody expects anything from them. Retired people are expected to coast gracefully into their graves with the least possible fuss and muss. Maybe that’s your perfect retirement lifestyle. It’s definitely not mine.
The Perfect Day makes you stretch.
Any decent lifestyle coach asks you to describe your perfect day. It’s a way to get you to establish priorities when you are confused and unfocused. They ask where you want to be and who you want to be spending time with. They want to know what you will be doing. Now maybe your ideal day is watching daytime soaps, and night time TV with some puttering around the house and garden on the breaks. Maybe it’s waiting for a call from your kids or a chance to spend some time with the grand kids. Maybe you are passively waiting for the phone to ring or a knock at the door. Maybe that’s your perfect day but somehow I don’t believe it. You’ve just accepted whatever comes at you not what moves your heart. Who is in control? Is it you or is it something else?
Remember when you believed in yourself?
Once upon a time, we believed that we could have what we want from life. Most people get that beaten our of them along the way but if you never got the lifestyle you wanted before, in retirement you get a second chance. Stop right now and take inventory.
Ask yourself what your perfect retirement day would look like. Maybe you did that exercise earlier but the excitement you felt then slowly faded and you accepted normal. Maybe you never even thought about your perfect day before because you learned you had to take whatever happened as what you deserve. Dream big or dream small about that perfect day. But dream. Get excited and take action. Let the perfect day motivate you to get out of your passive lifestyle and fight for something that fires your up. Break the apathy and inertia of old age with action. Call someone! Volunteer! Join a group! Take your grandchild to a movie. Start with a small unexpected action. But then take it further. Think about that perfect day and what you need to do to make it real. Then get off your ass and live.