I listen to the reports of retirees returning to the workplace again. I hear bragging points of people retiring at ages 45 to 50. They create books and workshops on how to retire early as if it is a goal in life to retire early. Some of the financial articles are on people retiring by 30. Wow, and then what?
There are many conversations about retiring now. Many left the workforce because it seemed like a good time to do it and the extra money in 20 and 21 gave permission to do that. Many never should have been in the careers they were in in the first place. Approximately 1 1/2 million people retired out due to the pandemic. Now, however, many are finding out that they retired too early and need the extra monies or they are bored, or they feel unproductive. In retrospect, retirement is a man-made construct. I say it over and over that the Soul, your true self, never came here to retire. We don’t even get out of childhood until age 30. So how do you even know enough to retire at 30. You aren’t even integrated enough within your own self to consider dropping out.
Individual blueprints are long, approximately 120 years. We can’t even imagine being productive and alive in our 90’s. We should, and we need to start thinking of mid life careers or goals for ages 60 – 90. Many of us, by that age are pretty much not as excited as when we were 30 and starting out. Starting a 30 year career plan at 60 sounds absurd. Plus, there are no role models–or few. Those who retired early and are worn out physically as they worked themselves into aches, pains and high blood pressure due to the stress, are happy to get out at 60. Why did they over tax the body like that? It was made to last and move at a wise and sensible pace. Most, however, followed a corporate drill or worked just for the money or stayed in jobs they didn’t love. Above all else, they disrespected the body and by the time they reach 60, the damage starts to show up and accelerates into the 80’s where most people expire. Talk to people in their 80’s and you will find them with many infirmities, going to more funerals, moving into memory care and missing their friends and siblings who have moved on to the great beyond.
It didn’t have to be this way. The body always listens to what you tell it and if you are telling it about this ailment or this lack of enthusiasm in life, it will grant your wish and help you check out. The body needs to feel purposeful or why should it stay? After being disrespected for so long, it basically is saying I no longer can reproduce, I’m not productive here and I don’t like the cruises, card games and many of these human diversions from boredom. I’m getting out. It is hard to reverse course when the body begins the journey out of here.
If we want to live longer and have those years be healthy and productive as well as enjoyable, we learn how to nurture the body, practice good nutrition and good body movement. We develop wisdom and recognize when we are outsmarting ourselves. We recognize our priorities. Without a healthy body, we become trapped in an unhealthy one. We now can’t engage in some simple physical activities. We take several medications for our blood pressure, high cholesterol and our diabetes. This is just a few. The CDC figures state that 42.5% of adults in America over age 20 are obese. 73.6% of Americans over age 20 are overweight. No wonder nobody plans for ages 60-90, they are overweight, tired and just done working. Yet many still have to work. We never planned for ages 60 – 90. We never dreamed of working or should I say being happy with work so that it never seemed like work.
For those who might have planned on these important ages, we balanced our lives and paced ourselves like a good race horse. We looked forward to our later years and we never spoke out about our thinning skin, our wrinkles or our night trips to the bathroom. We kept complimenting our bodies and were so grateful we could walk without pain, we could see ourselves in the mirror, we could hear the birds in the morning, we could appreciate the craziness of being human. We are grateful for what we have and we respect it. If you want to keep a good head of hair, you always speak well of it–because it is listening to what you are telling it.
If you are close to 60 or somewhere between 60 – 90 start planning. Start moving, change your bad diet and stop lying to yourself. It is not okay to eat all those salty foods. Read labels always. You don’t want to go to the doctor one day and find you have stage 2 or 3 kidney disease. The kidneys are paying a price for lots of salty foods, too much coffee, too much alcohol and pain killers.
We are all being forced to revisit our choices and repurpose our lives now. There are big transitions in society now. Don’t always plan on a pension. Things change as you are seeing. Unexpected things happen. Stop depending on the man-made world to save you. The spiritual world, the invisible world is the only thing you can rely on. We are all tourists here and learning to manage ourselves. We will one day go back home. Question is what do you want to do while you are here? Keep making new choices. Remember there are still the plans to be made for 90 to 120.