Two years and twelve lessons later

Facebook reminded me this morning that two years ago I walked out of my office and into retired life. Two years later, I am still discovering life as a retired person. Last year, I reflected on what one year into retirement looked like. Here are twelve things I discovered two years out.

  1. First lessons still hold true. I was given a copy of How to Retire Happy, Wild, and Free as a retirement gift. It was the first book I read in retirement. The key takeaways from that book are still applicable today. You need a passion to keep you happy. You need a community to support you. You need structure to be productive.
  2. The structure is not so structured. One of my strengths and weaknesses is being very structured. I learned that there can be a structure in a less structured way. The goals I set this year to reflect that discovery.
  3. I control my happiness. Early in retirement, I was in a new place and a new point of my life that wasn’t the picture of where I wanted to be. I spent six months with a life coach that led me to understand that I am the person who is in charge of my happiness.
  4. I like being adventurous. My two bike tours with Greg showed me that I need to venture more out of my safe zone. This applies to my life outside of cycling.
  5. You can nap. I believed that my day needed structure to be productive. I found that you don’t need to punch a time clock in retirement to have a good day. It’s about balancing my schedule and the freedom to enjoy the day.
  6. My work self did not retire. The things I learned in my workplaces come in handy in my retired life. I use my strengths and talents to help me make a difference in my life and community.
  7. I like being busy. I have always been focused and self-driven. I enjoy my less structured days with an occasional nap. I still find happiness in being busy and productive. It’s a balancing act.
  8. It’s not just about bikes. My goals have always had a fitness component that involved my bike. I was focused on the number of miles and activities. I now focus on the habit of being active as one of the keystone habits that guide my goals.
  9. I want to learn new things. I  have become an avid Quora contributor. That platform is a good place to understand diverse views and people while learning new things and sharing my thoughts. I actually had an answer go viral on the platform.
  10. It’s not too late to teach this old dog new tricks. I had the perception that I was set in my ways when I retired. I  found that new habits find their way into my life. The most notable change was how much I enjoy my visits to Planet Fitness.
  11. I want to ride my bike. Gone is the importance of how many miles a day I ride. It’s been replaced by enjoying life on my bike. I discovered that on a perfect spring morning on the Kokosing Gap.
  12. People are basically good. Too much emphasis is placed on political divisiveness. I find myself in an area where most around me have a different pollical view of life. I am learning to look beyond politics and more into what defines that person.

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1 Comment

  1. Greg Veal February 2, 2019 at 1:02 pm

    LOL! I could learn a lot from those same lessons! Since I retired, I’m so busy being non-productive that I don’t seem to have time to be productive!


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