Updated: Apr 22
Once, our parents and grandparents planned their lives based upon three stages:
Work & Family
While our parents and grandparents planned their lives according to this model, later generations found that, as Bob Dylan wrote, “times, they are a-changing”. So much so that in 2018 Stanford University with the sponsorship from The Annenberg Foundation created a Center on Longevity which developed a New Map of LifeTM to identify how we can retain mental as well as physical fitness along with financial security over a 100-year life span that is filled with a sense of belonging, purpose and worth.
Our life expectancy in the US has increased from an average of 69 years in 1960 to 77 years in 2020. Furthermore, generations from the baby boomer to the millennial redefined and broadened the scope of traditional families and careers. In addition, they are changing the narrative around how to live a life beyond the career. The family picture today may show a single parent or same sex couple or even a group of friends. The typical Monday through Friday 40-hour work week has also changed to one that incorporates flexible scheduling, shared offices and working from home. Even the traditional retirement has been redefined by the baby boomer generation who are placing their own personal stamp on how to experience life beyond the typical retirement age. In short, generational values and expectations have changed. The focus is now on longevity and experiencing a purposeful life. Rather than planning how that looks until the age of 80, it’s time to consider what life will look like up
to the age of 100. After all, Betty White left us just 2 weeks shy of her 100th birthday….
According to the Center on Longevity, there are 6 principles for a long-lived society:
New roles and opportunities must be created so that people experience purpose, belonging, and worth at all stages of life
Education is a lifelong pursuit
Working longer will occur in multigenerational contexts
Money. Opportunities to earn and save must be available throughout life to ensure financial security
Advances in the science of aging must be distributed broadly in the population
Physical health and the prevention of disease is critical to achieving the promise of longevity
As I contemplate the NEWMAP principles, I see incredible value in creating a customized and integrated longevity plan utilizing a 3-step process to Rethink, Redefine and Redesign your post career life. Much focus in major financial publications is placed on financial readiness for retirement. Financial planners work with their clients to provide financial security for the day their paychecks take on the form of social security, and for those who are fortunate, pension and 401K payments. While financial planners are adept at creating portfolios for financial readiness, many are less equipped to incorporate elements that elevate these portfolios into plans that are fully integrated and customized to incorporate your emotional wellness. Like integrated medicine, integrated longevity planning provides for a wholly healthy lifestyle for the individual. In other words, “Happiness is the highest form of health” (Dalai Lama) and “It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.” (Mahatma Gandhi). Rethinking your post-career future therefore requires moving beyond the traditional concepts around retirement and broadening your perspective around recognizing possibilities and opportunities your remaining years hold. This is not going to be a one-size fits all lifestyle. This requires analyzing where your focus needs to be to achieve satisfaction and a sense of purpose during this stage that is customized based on your values and needs.
Utilizing the NEWMAP principles, you would Redefine your lifestyle based upon new opportunities to explore and ways to continue to develop yourself that involves engagement with multiple generations. Questions you may ask include:
How would I rate my physical and mental health?
What family and other personal relationships require my attention?
Which of my talents and skills can be used in a different way?
What have I never done that I would like to try?
Do I have a strong passion that needs to be pursued?
Do I need to discover something to be passionate about?
Once you Redefine the most important aspects of your post career life that you wish to pursue, you can Redesign what this really looks like. What will each day, month and even year look like? What will you do after your morning coffee? Who will you spend time with? Your customized plan may include any of the following:
Undertaking a healthy lifestyle of physical activity
Volunteering within the community
Learning about new cultures through travel or learning a new language
Taking a spiritual retreat
Beginning a new hobby like painting, photography, furniture building
Return to the workforce on a part-time basis in a position you love
How might you apply the NEWMAP principles in your post career life? It’s never too late to begin the process of Rethinking, Redefining and Redesigning this latest stage of your life. Furthermore, partnering with a professional retirement coach trained in helping you identify what is most important for you and to then create a customized roadmap designed for you to achieve satisfaction as you embark on this purposeful journey.
Are you interested in discovering ways to Rethink, Redefine and Redesign your post career life? Learn more about how to use this process to embark on your ReLaunched Life at www.successfulshifts.com Get free guides designed to help you get a jump start and go from retired to ReLaunched!