Today, I have just witnessed our school president retired. In the Philippines, at the age of 60 or 65, retirement is a must. My mother retired last year as a school teacher. She’s 65. Ironically, I “retired” as a school foundation CEO at the age of 39.
Since then, I have no plan of coming back for any administrative work–perhaps maybe, only as a board member or consultant. That is if the school remains to be an institution with integrity and upholds its Christian vision, mission, and ministry.
As I see it, forty is my peak season. “Life begins at forty” so they say. Is it possible that life begins after “retirement”? How?
1. Reconsider Your Idea of Retirement.
The concept of retirement is about leaving a job or ceasing from work. For someone who hates his or her job, it’s a release. But for those who love what they’re doing, it’s a struggle.
There’s a problem. People who are passionate at what they do do not like the idea of retirement. In fact, there is an evident feeling of being forced to stop doing what you love the most.
The truth is, retirement is a by-product of an employee mindset. For me, it is a government or corporate idea to be enforced on a certain group of people to relinquish them from their positions. It’s a stereotype.
From a Christian point of view, it is not even considered biblical. The last time I check, I didn’t find the word “retirement” in my Bible. This does not mean it is wrong to be retired. But I don’t see myself retiring from my calling. Do you?
2. Refuse to Be Negatively Branded as Retiree.
When people think of retirees, what comes to mind?
Now that’s where it feels uncomfortable. They’re relegated as old, grumpy, weak, almost like second class citizens. Or worse, they’re perceived as SAD–sick, aging, and dying. You’re finished.
Most take pride in their pensions and privileges. But if the lack of wisdom to manage money prevails, the lump sum would just instantly be gone. The monthly allowance is not enough for a comfortable rest and dream leisure.
However, it is in your power to refuse to be socially tattooed as old men and women with money–a thing you can’t even carry to eternity. That’s not who or what you are.
When I retired at the age of 39, it’s my gateway to change my tire. That’s why I call it “re-tire.” Life is a journey and it’s not all about job. I retire from a job, not my spiritual calling.
You can start a new chapter where you maximize your potentials and never feel useless.
Since retirement is a man-made invention to hedge a limitation, change your attitude. Instead of thinking to cease and desist, increase and persist.
There’s one thing those inept employees who just constantly look for promotion lack that “retirees” have. It’s experience. The accumulated wisdom and experiential learning are just vast resources too precious to be wasted.
As a matter of fact, business people are richer in their older years. They’re even more influential and powerful, more productive and successful. They serve as consultants, trainers, mentors, and more.
The options are infinite. But retirement?
So the next time you’re thinking or at the verge of retiring, think again. (I’m doing it right now as I write this article while riding on a bus going home.)
Still, I see. You’ve got greater opportunities that most people just took for granted. Change your tires!
Glenn Plastina (c) 2017