A Year of Discovery
by Sue Methuen
I retired in 2019. It’s nice to be free of alarm clocks, schedules and deadlines. Free to do whatever I want and at my own pace. Each retired person faces the same question… what will I “do” with my time?
I’ve been thinking about this for a while and from what I can see, retired folks generally fall into two different patterns – the plan it group and the wing it group. I applaud the plan it group for their organizational efforts and admire the carefree attitude of the wing it group, so I decided that my retirement plan would be a blend of both.
To that end, I have been jotting down ideas that interest me and touch on every area of my life – mind, body and spirit. I have also included something creative, something I could feel passionate about, things that stretch me past my comfort zone, and things that would help to make the world a better place.
A friend advised me not to commit myself to anything in my first year of retirement and I agree. Instead, I see this as a year of discovery. My only goals are to touch on each item, adjusting the list as my interests change, and to be open to new activities that I have yet to discover. It is a tall order but one that excites me. It feels like graduating from high school again with a world of opportunities awaiting!
Here is my list of inspiration:
Mind – read daily, learn another language, write (journal, blog, stories or a book), play mind challenging games, learn about Canadian history, explore my family’s genealogy.
Body – eat healthy (mostly vegetables), move daily (long walks, hiking in nature), go to the gym (weights, aerobics, yoga), learn a new sport and of course Ladies Out Loud line dancing!
Spirit – practice mindfulness, meditate daily, read spiritual or self-improvement books, connect regularly with family and friends, strive to stay positive despite life circumstances.
Creative – take art lessons, paint, sketch, color, crochet or knit, play piano more, learn a new instrument, listen to different music genres, sing!
Travel – go where I haven’t been before (in my own city, province, country and the world), experience new cultures and foods, discover museums and historical sites.
Make the World a Better Place – volunteer for a meaningful cause, take up a new cause that would provide benefit locally and globally, eliminate all single-use plastic in my life.
That’s a start. I’m excited to see what other interests reveal themselves during my year of discovery.
Regardless of whether you are retired or not, I hope my list inspires you to create your own list. After all, we don’t need to be retired to live life fully. Who knows what discoveries we will uncover as life unfolds!