Passover is coming, dear Readers!! This means it is spring and time for renewal. As all good Jews around the world are celebrating their freedom, so too is Retirement Yenta. She is freeing herself from her past work files. FREE FROM THESE FILES AT LAST! She no longer is kidding herself into thinking she needs these files for reference. She is pushing them out the door as fast as she can. Don’t let her manic composure fool you, this gal is ready for retirement level ten (aka watching the tides in Miami Beach). So, dearest ones, your Yenta wants you to know that everything has its season and everything has its time. She wants you to know that it has a reason and a rhyme. So, allow yourself to let go.
Retirement Yenta knows the holidays are upon us. The annual office party is around the corner. Getting together with the Girls Going Places group just whizzed by so fast that your dear Yenta saw a blur of blonde hair and pearls. Plus, your dear Yenta knows that a holiday party can pop up at almost any time…and she wants YOU to be prepared.
This little Yenta likes to play with her traditional work attire and add a little bling to the outfit to make it festive. Your Yenta loves a crisp, white blouse with French cuffs. Paired with black pants and a black jacket, it is elegant for work. Add velvet pants or sequin pants and you have a party in your pocket! Skip the socks…pretend you are a Gal from Connecticut! Pair those snazzy pants and sock-less shoes with a touristy NYC tote as a purse with your finest pearls and you have a fun, quirky, elegant outfit that says HOLIDAY PARTY.
RY wants you to know that this little outfit creation is even more fun for those who have retired and have no real use for their work clothes any longer. If you have a suit sitting in the closet that you just can’t quite give up, pair it with some sparkles, add a twist of something fun that you would never wear to the office and get together with your old buddies. Maybe you want to have a Retirement Office Party (in the vein of RY’s Borrow a Boss Tip). Here’s what ya do. Gather your best pals from your working days for a party. Maybe they are a group that all worked at the same firm, or maybe they worked at several of your old work places. You all wear your Holiday Work Wear Ensembles (described above). You name someone the boss. You eat a little too much. Drink a lot too much. Laugh about the old days. Challenge each other to try something new. Give an award or two for “jobs well done.” Congratulate yourselves and then stumble home and be happy you don’t have to go into the office the next day!
RY says: Make that old work outfit snazzy. Sparkle it up for the Holiday. Have a party (or four). Drink a little too much…just don’t fall asleep and snore.
Retirement Yenta’s former boss, Jerry Golden, is blogging about Retirement. RY thinks Jerry has some good advice about anticipating Retirement in two stages. Jerry sees the first stage of retirement as being very active, doing things you didn’t have time for before. In the second stage, he suggests you might be dealing with costs of health care, a home aide, or other expenses that you didn’t anticipate. As you know all too well, dear Readers, RY is a believer in various stages of Retirement. She has her own Retirement Levels approach (10 Levels) to joining the Relaxationforce. Your dear Yenta likes to ease slowly into the Relaxationforce, finding time to practice for Retirement. This is a period where one is still working full-time. She then moves to part-time Relaxationforce/Workforce life balance. RY’s levels are fluid and can move to more or less work as one desires. This Yenta is a FIRM believer that you should be prepared to spend a significant amount of your Retirement Income on Pre-Retirement in the Sky (end of life) Care.
So, dear Readers, RY thinks today is a good day to look at your Retirement Levels. Consider where you are in the Workforce (or Relaxationforce) and consider where you want to be in 10 years, 20 years, and how you will prepare for your Retirement in the Sky. Set your goals now. Don’t wander blindly into the Relaxationforce…you might get hit by an old lady in a Hoveround.
Retirement Yenta learned long ago (when she was but a wee-little Yenta) that she should stop a project when she stopped learning something new or when the joy of doing the task wore off. That’s right, dear Readers, everything has its time and place. Life is full of change and adventure, and your dear Yenta wants you to know that it is ok to decide it is time to move on to a new task. Humans need change in order to be happy. They need variety. They need to be challenged. There was a period in her life where this Yenta would try as hard as she might to stay at a task or job that simply wasn’t fulfilling (like working in a chicken coop) because that was what she thought she should do, but she learned there are more exciting things around the corner and that she needed to not guilt herself for moving on. This Yenta needed to let go of the chickens and move on to NYC and on to her career in the financial services industry. It challenged her. It made her happy. AND, she was learning things every day. Then the day came. Your Yenta needed a change, but she still loved financial services. So, what did she do? She let go of corporate America and started her own business as a marketing resource for the financial services industry. It has been a great success, and RY continues to feel challenged, refreshed, and rewarded every day.
So, dearest ones, your Yenta wants you to know that everything has its season and everything has its time. She wants you to know that it has a reason and a rhyme. So, allow yourself to let go.
Leisure, dear Readers, is luxurious. Your dear Yenta loves to luxuriate in her leisure. Now mind you, she is no Leisure Suit Larry. She knows how to live it up and get her work done. She also knows that too much leisure is not good for the soul, and neither is too little. RY has friends living in the land of Retirement that have schedules with activities every minute of every day. It makes this Yenta nervous. She also has friends in the land of Retirement who have no plans. They sit and read, and watch some tv. OY, this makes a Yenta nervous, too. Your Yenta needs balance in her life (maybe its because RY has been doing too much yoga). She needs time off, she needs scheduled activities, and she needs work. Small doses of each give this Yenta the balance she needs. She does not want to suffer from Retirement Burn Out. She wants to relax and chillax without it becoming too much.
Now, RY wants you to know that her recipe for leisure is not the same for other’s recipes for leisure. RY believes that everyone needs to strike the balance that works for themselves. Some need to ramp up their activities, others need to read more. It’s up to you!
Retirement Yenta says: Manage your leisure. Plan your time. If you find yourself anxious, mix it up. Find the balance that works for you, so your brain doesn’t turn to fluff.
“OoSReS?!? What the heck is that?” you may be thinking, dear Readers. OoSReS is Out of Sync Retirement Syndrome. Retirement Yenta just read an article about it in the AARP magazine and she thought “That’s this Yenta’s life!” Well, except in the article the hubby was retired, and the wife wanted to continue working. Let your Yenta tell you the facts. Retirement Yenta has worked her whole life. Since her early days working her youth away in a chicken coop, she has dreamed about getting out of the workforce. RY did not take family-leave time when she had kids, unlike many women. Your dear Yenta was more like the men in her field. She had her babies, and a day nanny, and a night nanny so she could continue her career. It seems these women with the career hiatus for family rearing are excited to be in the workforce and don’t want to step away from their careers. It is their identities. It is intellectually stimulating for them. RY’s Dearly Beloved Hubby (DBH) loves his job. He loves the fact that when he is working, he is helping people. He also loves the latest in gadgets and gizmos and having disposable income for the purchasing of said gizmos. AARP says this can cause a little strife in marriage. RY knows she’s a bit grumpy about the fact that she, being in her Retirement Level 7, has time off that she would like to spend with her DBH, but he is off saving the world, one tooth at a time. This is not how she imagined it would be. RY and DBH have regular discussions and meetings to make plans for the future and to define the direction they will go if and when Retirement Level 10 is achieved.
Your dear Yenta would like to advise you to begin planning early. OoSReS is very much a Baby Boomer with a two career family issue. It is important to know what each partner envisions in money and time and travel for their Golden Girl years. It will take some planning. It will take some trade-offs. It will probably take time for transitions (phased retirement levels) from each partner. But, in the end, if you plan well, you can still be best friends. RY says: Get in sync, so you can sashay down the beach, and tell the whole wide world touché today.
Dear Readers, your Yenta has been on a meditation kick of late. Well, it’s more of a kind-of-but-not-really-meditation kick. She has read articles of late about the importance of gratitude and appreciation. It’s changed your Yenta’s world view. Over the years, RY has pushed herself to be more. She’s loved reading books about self improvement and wealth management. She’s gone to charity events. She’s done all the right things that the world expects her to do. But now, dear Readers, RY is playing around with her Retirement Levels and she believes she deserves a break. She has decided that the career pressure to do more and learn more is not that necessary. She’s an expert in her field. Her kidlets are out of the nest. She doesn’t need to go, go, go…do, do, do. She needs to simply be. Your dear Yenta is giving herself permission to be. That is all. JUST BE. She is going to go about her life, be present in the moment and enjoy her homes, her family, her own company, and her time on the planet. She will continue to work, but she now has the permission to watch the market at her leisure. Be. Enjoy. Breathe. Appreciate what you have. There’s no need to close your eyes and say OMMMMM.
Retirement Yenta is loving the idea of learning to love leisure. Oh dear Readers, this little Yenta never thought that at this time in life she would be needing to learn to live a leisure lifestyle. She worked in the financial services industry where she was always told to prepare for medical bills and assisted living. But, dear Readers, according to a recent article in The Atlantic, our society is going to soon be faced with A World Without Work. [cue scary music]
The concept of machines doing all the work is not a new one. We’ve seen it in Science Fiction movies (the big insects) and the Jetsons (RY was “daughter Judy”). But now, technology is advancing faster than ever and our society is getting closer and closer to that Jetsons era.
Your dear Yenta is looking forward to the day she can roll out of bed, into a capsule, and be transported to where she is going. Her biggest question is: What will I do when I get there?
Retirement Yenta doesn’t always have the best of days, dear Readers. There are days when her nerves will sometimes get the best of her. This usually takes the form of some stomach distress. Back in the old days, this problem might be dealt with by giving a Yenta a “nerve pill” (as Mother Yenta called them). But, dear Readers, this little Yenta knows that medicating the problem only masks the symptom and doesn’t give true relief. That is why your dear Yenta decided long ago that a part-time Therapy Dog was the way for her to go! RY does not want or need a full-time dog in her life, that is why Edith, the Office Pug, started working at RYs office. She comes in about once a week and, boy howdy, do all the problems of the week start to fade away!
Retirement Yenta found a summary of scientific studies online that have proven Human-Animal Interaction (HAI) has positive effects on people. The study states:
Summary of effects of human-animal interaction
The studies reviewed here clearly indicate the following positive effects of HAI in several different domains and in humans of different age groups, with and without special medical, or mental health conditions:
Relax, dear Readers, no one here is planning to switch genders! (Although, Retirement Yenta does recommend Transparent starring Jeffrey Tambor available on Amazon Prime!).
Retirement Yenta is talking about the Transition to the Relaxationforce! Your dear Yenta has always believed in this transition period and has come up with her own term (Retirement Levels) of describing how Retirement and the transition into Retirement really works.
Recently, Retirement Yenta discovered a white paper by Merrill Lynch called Work in Retirement: Myths and Motivations available here.
Your dear Yenta was quite pleased with herself. Her Retirement Level Plan is very similar to what Merrill Lynch is calling the Four Phases of Today’s Retirement (see their grid above). RY’s Retirement Levels Plan is a “sliding scale.” The initial levels…