My pre-retirement career:Communications and Investor Relations executive (Wendy’s, L Brands and Cardinal Health) and consultant in healthcare and retail.
Three ways I spend my time in retirement:I took several months off to totally decompress, walk the beach and get a Florida cottage remodel off the ground. Most recently, I’ve been developing my next business, working more with my nonprofit interests, and attempting to be more in the moment with family and leisure interests.
What I love most about retirement:I love the flexibility, getting to say yes to more unplanned opportunities like travel and not having that Sunday night “school night” feeling anymore.
My biggest challenge with retirement:I’ve found that when I retired from Cardinal Health, the overall label of retiree seemed to stick. I didn’t think about that happening, when I saw it as really just a shift to the next stage of my life. So it’s dealing with the word retirement and people’s traditional perception of it. Also, I did have to remind myself that it was OK to actually take some time off and go with the flow for a few months after being so highly regimented for so long.
What I did to prepare for retirement:My financial planning was well in hand and I had started to think about how I was going to shift the hours allotted to “work” time and what specifically I wanted that work to be. That said, it has been and will continue to be a journey. I continue to explore and redefine priorities and my vision for the coming years.
Something I’ve recently done for the first time:I joined an angel investing organization, climbed the 300 steps to the Sacre Coeur (pouring rain at that time), helped a small sea turtle that was stranded on the beach, and took a hot yoga class (now that was a lesson learned).
Most recent book/article I’ve read:I’ve read What Color is Your Retirement, Thank you for Being Late, and A Gentleman in Moscow. I read lots of articles on a variety of topics – too much content, too little time!
My future:I’d really like to coach others to define and realize their objectives and dreams, live life in the present with my family and volunteerism, and keep exploring and learning new things now instead of waiting. My husband and I will be spending more time in Florida and traveling as well.
My advice for future retirees:It is never too early to plan your next stage in life. Retirement is not just about finances, it’s about rediscovering what will really give you a sense of fulfillment.