What to do with your spare time By Bill Storie
Nothing is the answer. You don’t have any spare time, you’re retired. If you’re not yet retired stick around and find out what us old fogies do all day.
You see, when you were working you had to give say eight hours every day to the company. Then you had to give several more hours to the family or partner or someone else. Those were daily obligations that you couldn’t get out of. So having spare time in those periods of your life really did mean something. If your obligations consumed say 14 hours every day and you liked to get 8 hours of sleep then you only ever had a maximum of 2 hours each day, for yourself. It probably wasn’t too difficult to work out what to do with your spare time.
Watch television, read a book, play on Facebook, do some gardening, crochet, etc. You probably didn’t get much gardening done in your 2 hours. Especially if they were at the back end of the day when the daylight hours were long since gone.
But now you have oodles of spare hours every day, seven days a week.
Certainly the time you have nowadays can, or at least should, be classified as your time – the time when you decide what to do, especially now that your obligations are largely behind you. But how’s that working out for you?
Not too good maybe.
Now you have grandchildren to transport around or help out at some local organization perhaps. It seems that your spare time has been consumed by replacement obligations and while you can choose to not get involved, you feel guilty about letting the team down. After all you’ve got plenty spare time, what else are you going to be doing day in, day out?
This time in your life – the Third Journey as we call it – is really the time to do what you always wanted to do but didn’t have the time back then. The only problem is that either due to limited finances, or limited energy, or maybe you just can’t be bothered, the passion you once had to trek the Himalayas has subsided. Maybe the rocking chair in the garden is more than enough entertainment and exercise.
You are going to live for another fifteen or twenty or thirty years. Surely you can’t rock for that long. Yes I know, “Grandmas rock”, I get it.
You need to find something worthwhile to do with your spare time. There’s just far too much of it to ignore. Focus on your health and your diet and exercise if you can. Focus on keeping the mind active and the brain in high gear. Meet new people, or learn a new language (then go visit the country), or start painting, or heaven forbid start a Blog and get 70,000 Followers around the world.
This is indeed YOUR time and only you can choose what to do with it. You can help out family of course or friends or neighbors of course, but you have every excuse to choose otherwise – you’re retired, and most people recognize that and respect your wishes.
Say to yourself,
“I choose to do xxxxx. It is MY choice and while I will listen to others, I will, at the end of the day, choose myself. I will choose to be contented and as happy as I can be, and I will only be so if I have made the choices myself. When I lay my head on the pillow at night I want to be able to say that I am proud of myself and I accomplished what I set out to do this morning. In other words, I like me.”
So, get up and get going. You will have no concerns about your spare time any more. It will be taken up completely – and you’ll feel so much better for doing it.
Enjoy your spare time not your spare tire.
By Bill Storie