3 ways (NOT) to be a post-retirement sluggard

We all hope to achieve FI and retire early (FIRE), as retiring sounds like fun. That's until you start to become a sluggard soon after retiring.


Escape reality

Since you don't have much things to expend your post-retirement energy surge on and the environment you live in is such a dull place, why not live in the virtual world?

You can have utopia. You can build a character that you wished you were but are not. You can build an empire and a reputation, unrivalled by "anons" in the space. 

It feels damn good. 

You give yourself a pat on the back - virtually.


Perhaps it does not matter that the REAL environment which you live, eat and shit in remains a dull and somewhat unpleasant place... Or you felt it was not worth your time to go change it. 


There are always more and better satisfactions in conquering utopias, and chasing things that don't matter - in real life.


How NOT to be a sluggard #1:

Don't escape or bury your head in the sand like an ostrich. Use your finite resources, eg. time & energy, to make positive real changes around your real life.


"Be the change you want to see in the world."

-Mahatma Gandhi


Do away with goals and expectations

When you don't have to wake up to a 9 to 5 job, you would sleep until you wake up naturally. Then slowly crawl out of bed. There's no need to give a damn for messy hair and you can munch on breakfast for the entire morning. If it's still morning, that is.


You can put on all the calories you want but not the nice clothes sitting in your wardrobe, cos now nobody cares if you are looking good. Yes, no more weight loss goals or comparing with your better looking peers.


Isn't it carefree to live life without anymore expectation, KPIs and goals? Everyday would just repeat itself peacefully giving the same outcome. 


Wait...

Are you actually running a different rat race now?

And who knows it could be a gradually worsening outcome that is too subtle for your day-to-day realization. 


Take a pause. 

What should be the meaning of your life and living?


How NOT to be a sluggard #2:

  • Challenge yourself to accomplish things that you didn't have the time or money to do before
    • Make a bucket list and set out to tick them off
  • Don't be the best version of yourself
  • Improve on your skills even if they are not associated with work
    • You will never know if one day you might need them. Take it as preparing for life's uncertainty.


Procrastinate

This is related to the above point - the tendency to procrastinate increases when you retire and expectations of yourself are lowered. 


Previously, at work, you were busy chasing people and tasks all the time. Now that you have so many "free" tomorrow, it is especially gratifying to say "I can wait for tomorrow". 


Tomorrow I will exercise and lose weight. 

Tomorrow I will get up early and clean the place up. 

Tomorrow I will go out to do... blah blah.


How NOT to be a sluggard #3:

Live in today like there's no tomorrow. 

I do not mean that you spend every single cent of your retirement account. What I meant is you can learn to prioritize and get things done TODAY, even when there's no pressure to do it, instead of kicking cans down the road. 

No excuses making.


I won't go through a list of tips on how to not procrastinate because you can find them easily online.

I believe it is about framing of our mentality. No amount of tips and advice can move us if our mentality is not right.


--

Some thoughts




For every life decision made, we know there would be an expected outcome. When you chose to retire early, what kind of life outcome / output are you looking for? 

Do you cease your life input (or start inputting rubbish)?


Get your butt off the couch now to do something that you think you will regret on your deathbed for not doing. 

Even if it's something that you think you might fail at.

If you don't try, you will never know.




I shall revisit this post when I truly retire one day.


PS:

Guess what?
Maybe to some, the purpose of their retirement is really to become a sluggard!


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