As I peruse the myriad of articles online about our generation and read the various predictions about our retirement, I have to say it’s a good thing I have learned to take what the “academics” and “financial experts” say with a jaundiced eye. Otherwise, I might be tempted to “r-u-n-o-f-d” because it’s obvious we’re headed for either imminent descent into poverty as we retire because we’ve failed to plan or madness from boredom because we won’t be able to work and we don’t know how do do anything else.
Geesh, maybe it’s the stuff I’m reading, but what’s with all the doom and gloom? I know I’ve been called Pollyanna and told to wake up and smell the reality shows, but Baby Boomers are made from pretty sturdy stock. We know it might get a little financially tight, but that’s nothing new, we’ve been there, done that. Yes, we’ll be older and probably on a fixed income, but we also won’t be raising children and paying down a mortgage either.
I read one article that said Baby Boomers weren’t prepared to live longer. Huh? How’s that work? How exactly does one “prepare” to live? Don’t you just LIVE? Oh, I guess we could worry about how we’re going to spend all that “extra” time we’re being given as if we’re on some type of living schedule. Me? I’m going to eke every single itty bitty micron of pleasure and fun out of every single moment I am given. This is how I see it. If we are living longer we get to spend that time with our family and friends, exploring new places and learning new things. I will never turn down the chance to dance in the rain or ride a horse in the moonlight. When my best friend, L, wants to scuba dive and play with the parrot fish, I’m there.
I know my life philosophy won’t work for everyone and that’s fine. Everyone needs their own. It’s just important that you have one and not buy into the naysayers who will try and place limits on you. Finances can be worked. If you can’t get traditional employment, look into writing for an online freelance site. You can probably write better than most who are already doing this work and you’ll earn when you want to work. It can add up, believe me.
Stay active and stay positive. Every day is a gift. Our generation is one of artists, philosophers and geniuses. There is no way we will go silently into anything, much less retirement. Do it your way. And if the first way doesn’t work, try another way. There’s nothing in the rulebook that says there’s only one way. In fact, there’s not even a rule book. So dance, or run or ride your bike. Or climb a mountain or read a book. Or volunteer or work at Wal-mart or don’t. Or start a business or learn to knit. Or go to college or visit Africa. Or go up in a hot air balloon or ride a camel. Or buy a motorcycle or start a pig farm. The possibilities are infinite, all you need to do is LIVE.