Retirement Yenta has many varied interests. Some might say her interests are so many and so varied that she has ADD…Career ADD. Over the years, this little Yenta has gone from being a full-time corporate work horse, to being a “Yenta-of-all-trades.” Your dear Yenta has her own consulting business, she is a landlord, a fund raiser for her favorite charities, she manages a fixed income portfolio, a mother of two, and a blogger extraordinaire. Dear Readers, there are so many positives to this type of work life! There is flexibility…you can take time off as you want…no HR department breathing down your neck and counting your remaining leave days. There is the constant variety…you will never get bored. Then, there is RY’s favorite benefit: it works beautifully with your Retirement Levels and changing interests. That’s right dear Readers, if one wants to be 75% retired, one can simply drop one of their projects in favor of beach life. If one wants more work…then take on a new project. AND, let’s face it, as we age, there are new things that interest us…do those things that interest you…and only the things that interest you. Retirement Yenta says: Walk away from the W-2. Your mind will be kept busy, and you won’t be blue. Working new projects the rest of your life will keep you interesting and will drive out all strife.
Retirement Yenta is a shoe freak. She loves nothing more than a funky pair of comfy shoes. Your dear Yenta is always on a quest for fun footwear attire. Recently, your Yenta was reading Joan Didion’s latest book and something ol’ Joan said struck a chord with la Yenta. Joan wrote about having to give up her red suede 4″ pumps. Well, dear Readers, this little Yenta was never into such high pointy heels…but the thought of red suede shoes does a Yenta good. They reminded RY of a beloved pair of red suede Pumas this precocious Yenta could not live without during her youthful Yentaness. Soooooo, while visiting Miami Beach, your Yenta yoddled over to her favorite funky footwear emporium, Shoe Freak, and asked her footwear friend Ziggy to make some suggestions. Retirement Yenta went home with an elegant pair of red suede sandals with an appropriately comfy 1″ heel. Stylish, comfortable, funky, and fun. Everything a Yenta needs.
With this long-winded, alliterated tale in mind, RY wants to recommend you start considering your retirement footwear. It may be time to give up the most extreme styles (one does not want to break a hip!), but it is never too late to kick up your heels in a stylish way.
Retirement Yenta is a die-hard New Yorker. One thing that makes your dear Yenta think of her beloved city more than anything is her 212 area code. With that in mind, dear Readers, Retirement Yenta decided tip number 212 would be directed to all the New Yorkers (and all you workaholics) out there. There’s a saying…if you can make it in NYC, you can make it anywhere. There’s truth to that. BUT, in order to make it here one has to constantly stay on top of their game and one has to constantly work. If you are a business person (or artist) in NYC, you have to be on 24/7 (more like 25/8…if we could just have that extra hour every day and an extra day every week)! Well, dear Workaholics, we never know when the ultimate Retirement in the Sky will descend upon us. So, Retirement Yenta is recommending that you start enjoying your life. Maybe a little at a time. If your work is the thing that gets you “juiced,” then “have at it”…but, if you work to work, and have little time for the things that DO get you “juiced,” then, your dearly-beloved Retirement Yenta wants you to gather your thoughts and consider starting her Retirement Levels Plan. Begin at Level 1. Work 4 days a week, using the remaining three days to eat bon-bons, or fish, or better yet, raise money for your favorite charity. If these three ideas are not for you, put your thinking cap on and figure out what you will enjoy most. Once you have adjusted to Level 1, consider Level 2. This level is flexible, you can have another day off or fewer hours the 4 days you are working. In this little Yenta’s Retirement Levels Plan, there are 10 levels…each with less work and more fun involved as the levels get higher. It’s like Angry Birds, but funner…yes, she said funner.
Retirement Yenta says: When retired, don’t sit down and wait to die. Do something that gets your batteries charged. Keep yourself engaged–your mind and body will appreciate it…but only do things you enjoy doing!
We all know that Retirement Yenta likes to work on her emotional self. Oy, the years of shrinkage! One thing that has inspired her in times of anxiety is a quote from her dear (not personal) friend, Sigurd Olson: “You cannot turn your back on any challenge, physical or mental. If you do, you diminish yourself, and the next time it wil be easier to say, ‘no, I cannot do it.’ If you take the hazards as they come and survive, you will be stronger and better, and the trip will be a milesone in your life, one you will alway know as a turning point.”
In life there are milestones and defining moments and retirement is one of them. Keep in mind, my dear Readers, these wonderful, defining milestones don’t stop after retirement. Make the best of your Retirement Days and challenge yourself to do new and better things. Seek them, and they will come. (“Build it, and they will come”–thanks Field of Dreams)
Retirement Yenta likes to socialize. This is well known to all her dear Readers. What she hasn’t shared yet is how she likes to socialize with like-minded people. Yes, that’s right, Retirement Yenta likes to find a group of friends who are living similar lives and she likes to share secrets with them. Her secret for saving. Their secret for surviving their kids. Her secret for the perfect blond coif. Their secret for saving a buck (or two). The list goes on and on. Oh, dear Readers, you may well know that sharing advice and wisdom is something a Yenta does best, but where does all that wisdom come from? Why, it comes from Retirement Yenta’s friends and neighbors. So, with this in mind, Retirement Yenta is at Miami Beach, getting to know her retired neighbors. So many are from New York City! BUT, there are many that are not. Oh the untapped resources for wisdom. Retirement Yenta suggests you find friends that are at your same or similar retirement level, you will have lots to share with one another, and the possibilities are endless (plus, you can have someone to play Bocci or Shuffle Board with!)
Retirement Yenta has spoken to you before about finding your best Retirement Level. Well, dear Readers, the time has come to talk about it again. Aside from working part-time (which is an on-going thing), your dear Yenta has found that occasional projects (if not working regularly) of a consulting or personal nature can really fill your days and get you jazzed. This little Yenta gets a real sense of satisfaction when she completes a project. AND, because these projects are short term and can sometimes require full-time work, you will appreciate your time off even more when the project ends. PLUS, you will have the satisfaction of a completed job well done. Retirement Yenta says: When you’re retired, create a project that can benefit you and your community. You will still be retired, but you will have some work to do. This way you can have your cake, and eat it too.
Once you finally have “bitten the bullet” and actually retired, take some time off. Retirement Yenta says: REALLY take time off and do NOTHING. The most creative thinking will come out of this process. Don’t panic, know that you deserve a rest. All of retirement will not be this way. You should use this time to invent your new retirement lifestyle.