Retirement is about reinvention. Not reinventing who you are – but reinventing how you live out who you are. Reinventing your identity and aligning it in new ways with your purpose. Retirement is about putting attention on our priorities at this point in our lives. Our priorities change over time. What we were once drawn to may no longer hold the same allure for us.
We think we just need a hobby, something to occupy our time. But here’s the thing -- all the interests and hobbies in the world will not fill the hole that our identity has filled. And when that work identity is taken away and not replaced with something else that is meaningful and rewarding to you now, it leaves a gaping hole. You can fill that hole by redirecting your energy in a new and different way, defining passions and strengths for your 60+ year old self, rather than trying to rekindle interests from your 30 year old self. The challenge is to invest in the hard work of discovering a new way of experiencing meaning and purpose. This often requires you to explore a deeper level of self-awareness, a look at your strengths and passions with a new lens.
For example, if we were once drawn towards building and owning a regional $50MM company, today we may be proud and satisfied with retiring and selling a single location $20MM business. The commitment required to take the business to the next level may not be where we want to put our energy now.
And things that still hold allure may now play out differently. How we are drawn to it may have changed. For example, if we always wanted to run a multi-location entity, we may be inclined to open the locations as a means to offer our adult children or key employees a proving ground and a semi-independent management opportunity.
Reinventing simply means you are shifting your priorities and finding new ways of living out what matters most to you now.
It’s time to invest in yourself.