Age Brilliantly was founded because most people living today are going to live longer than they expected to when they graduate from childhood and adolescence. Based on the people we met – many of us believed that our adult years would last till about 65-70, and that while most of them would be spent working, we’d retire from work around age 50 for a few “golden years of leisure”, while our bodies and mind deteriorate. With that part of life so far off and the negative image of most elderly people (e.g.,
(“don’t most of them end up in nursing homes?”), little attention was given to planning ahead.
But that’s not going to be our experience in the 21St century. We’re living into our 80s90s, and 100+; projections are that children born now wil live to 103-4. Many people believe that someone alive today will live to 150. Moreover we’re living healthier lives during many of these senior years, thanks to nutrition, exercise, health technology, etc.
While financial advisors encourage us to planning our financial-well-being so we can afford to enjoy these “extra years of life”, we still spend more time planning for a party that will last a few hours than we do for the many years after we decide to stop retiring.
Whether “retirement from work” means leaving your job working for someone else, or existing the company that you’re been running for many years, the situation today for most people is the same: you’re not planning ahead. What other lifestyle options could you have after you retire that would make life fulfilling till your 80, 90, or 100+? What steps other than saving and investing money can you take to ensure that your life will be fulfilling as you use the extra 10,000+ days to travel, build businesses, engage in philanthropy, continue your education, engage in passions, like writing, and purposes which help other people in the world?
Recently, Leanne Beasley Berry shared her experiences post-retirement. In My Retirement Didn’t Go As Smoothly As I Thought It Would, she relates her story: when she retired from education, she had no real plans other than enjoying herself and taking care of day-to-day tasks. “I was excited to retire, but once the euphoria of not going to work wore off, I got pretty bored. I read a lot of books…began the long put-off task of cleaning out my house (etc.).. So after sleeping a minimum of eight hours each night, I was left with about fifteen hours a day with nothing to do.” (italics added).
She then describes the challenges that a person who is already retired has in trying to find a job, full-time or part-time that is interesting and rewards her for her labor – whether that’s fulfilling passion or purpose or simply being paid fairly. Her situation is similar to ones we hear from other retirees who’ve made no plans. And even those who have an immediate plan to move, travel , spend time with a new grandchild, etc., most lack even a rough plan to maximize one’s life for the next 20 years (or 1000 weeks or 7000 days!) Do you want this to happen to you?
You know that the time to begin planning for admission into top colleges happens before your child or grandchild enters high school, much less her/his senior year. Similarly, the best time to think through how you want to lead a fulfilling adult life for 60-80+ years begins when you launch your adult self; the second best time is now.
To help you do it, AgeBrilliantly.org was created as an interactional platform on which you can share your experiences and insights through blogs, articles, videos, etc. Further, use the Forum to pose questions to similarly-minded people who want to lead fulfilling, elongated lives, who can share their experiences and insights. Let’s all use AgeBrilliantly as the go-to-place to learn from experiences and then make better life decisions so every year can be as fulfilling as possible, for as long as possible!