Retirement Regret? Yes, it can exist and I may even be suffering from that myself five years after I took the plunge into early retirement. I recently asked the question ‘What does your version of Retirement look like? and the comments flowed in. Lydia from Where the Wild Things Were, raised a good point in her comment:
I think a lot of people misunderstand how much satisfaction they actually get from work. It is hard to be productive when there’s no structure. Work doesn’t have to define you but productivity is important.
Things happen in 3’s
The topic of Retirement seems to be popping up everywhere in my life at the moment.
I was recently asked to contribute my thought to an article ‘A Workaholic’s Guide to Retirement’. The article raised some interesting points in particular the need to plan, re-assess your priorities as well as re-assessing your thinking.
My daughter, who is an Executive Coach mentioned that she had seen an increase in people needing help transitioning into Retirement. They are nervous and unsure about their future. Life has revolved around a career of over 40 years. It is an increasing problem to address, especially for those who are enjoying good health and facing perhaps another 30 years of life.
Finally, as things come in 3’s, I listened to a Radio National broadcast: ‘Retirement regret and what to do about it’ on Life Matters with Hilary Harper and Michael Mackenzie. The guest in this broadcast was Jennifer Luke, a Career Development Specialist with the University of Southern Queensland. Jennifer returned to University to conduct research as to why older workers who were close to retirement or in the retirement space wanted to find work, either in a paid or volunteer capacity. She conducted a series of interviews with people who have retired or are transitioning to retirement. You can listen to this 12 minute broadcast HERE
I’ve listed a couple of takeaway points below but found the broadcast very interesting and made me feel comforted to know that there are some, like me who are wanting a more productive retirement lifestyle.
It seems that the transition to Retirement for many may not live up to expectations. We look forward to the flexibility that retirement brings where our time is our own. However, for some, whose career has been their main focus for most of their working life, Retirement can certainly become an unwelcome change in their life. They fear looming Retirement. Others find that after the ‘honeymoon’ period is over, the reality is that they feel regret and loss.
The #1 motivator for retirees to consider returning to work
Jennifer Luke found in her research that although finances was a factor in motivating people to consider working , it wasn’t the main factor. Most people answered that they wanted to keep busy and have social inclusion.
The #1 barrier for retirees returning to work
Age discrimination. Yes, although there are Age Discrimination laws, people still felt concerned that their age would be a negative barrier and that they wouldn’t be seen as worthy.
We all have skills whether they be technical skills or life skills that we can use to pass on to others. In her research, Jennifer Luke, asked two questions which I put to you today:
What are your skills?
What do you want to pass on to others?
If you are struggling with Retirement Regret, perhaps these two questions may help you develop a plan. I would love to hear your thoughts on how you turned your Retirement Regret into a fulfilled lifestyle that suits you.
If you have embraced Retirement and found new and interesting ways to fill the void left from your career, I would also love you to share with me.