We are vacationing in Palm Springs California for several months and have had the fortunate experience of meeting people from all walks of life. Most are retired, although a few are still working and just spending a week or two here. Several have indicated they will retire and then go back to work. They all are renting condo’s in the property where we are. It is called La Palme, on El Ceilio Road. There are 225 units, 6 pools, 6 hot tubs, 3 tennis courts and lots of above ground parking. A nice place and very enjoyable, but then I digress. Retire and then Go Back to Work! What? That is what I really want to talk about today in this post.
Retire and then Go Back to Work
One couple we met at the pool retired when he was 51. He had started a company and as it turned out was very successful. The company made a lot of money when he sold out and basically from a financial perspective will never need to work again.
He told me that he did nothing really for the first five years other than investing his cash from the sale of his business. He found that after five years he really missed the challenge, the social element, the technical aspects of his business etc. Most of all he was worried that his mind was getting stale and he was forgetting things.
Many of us focus on exercising our bodies to stay in shape and feel better about ourselves. We forget that our brains are just another muscle and need to be exercised as well. He was worried that if he did not do something he would lose it. This individual also needed the challenge in his life. He wanted to feel that he could still make a contribution in life.
He decided not to go back to work, but he did decide to get involved as a consultant to several companies and he volunteers on several organizations in the community. This approach made him feel worthwhile again and people recognize his contributions as well. This is what worked for him. While it may not be right for everyone, the point is that you cannot just retire and do nothing.
Get involved and support your community, go back to work part time, focus on your investments and retire and then Go Back to Work or do wherever your interests take you. For more thoughts about lifestyle issues in retirement, click here.