Of course, retirement and meetup can be done altogether.
Debbie Sanford will share with us how she managed to make new friends after she retirement. You can listen to the show at: http://rockyourretirement.libsyn.com/retirement-and-meetup-episode-31
Retirement and Meetup
Debbie Sanford teaches us about Retirement and Meetup, and how they go together.
Debbie Sanford is a native Californian who lived in the Bay Area for 64 years. She retired in June 2014 after teaching preschool for 24 years. Shortly thereafter, her long-term marriage broke up and her youngest daughter became pregnant. She decided to purchase the “beach house” of her dreams, which was a lovely manufactured home within blocks of the beach. It had always been a fantasy of hers to live near the beach and she wanted to be close to her daughter. Three weeks after she moved, her first grandchild was born.
SOCIAL AND FAMILY
Debbie didn’t know anyone in the area other than her daughter. Already feeling like her life had gone full circle, but she needed friends, she joined the activities in her 55+ living community, met some fun women her age, and shared happy hours and fun times with them. But other things were missing, such as a book club, bunko, and volunteering. She had all participated in the Bay Area for the last 35 years. Enter the world of Meetups!! She joined a variety of meetup groups including Hiking, Book club, and Random acts of kindness. Retirement and Meetup certainly go together!
VOLUNTEER AND PHILANTHROPY
In addition to spending time in Retirement and Meetup, Debbie loves to volunteer and believes by volunteering you are really helping yourself by helping others. Some places she volunteers for are:
Before You Retire: Before retirement, Debbie was nervous and a little anxious. She wishes she would have known how happy she would be in retirement.
Getting “unstuck” in your retirement: Look for a meeting in a city you live in for the volunteer bureaus. This meeting will tell you all the volunteer opportunities in all the cities in your area. Volunteering doesn’t have to be a physical activity. There are a wide range of different opportunities you can pick something based on what you like to do.
Remember, you can Rock Your Retirement too, but finding something you love. Perhaps Meetup.com is the place to find it!
This episode takes you back on the 30th of January 2019, where I was a guest on Reverend Barbara Williams’ BlogTalkRadio. In this episode, we talked about Life and Retirement and everything that would help bring positivity in your life. BlogTalkRadio is an audio web-based platform that allows anyone to create live and on-demand talk content on the web. If you’re a radio broadcaster at heart, BlogTalkRadio gives you the ability to go live with it’s web-based studio and host multi-participant broadcasts using just a computer and a phone.
Motivation for Writing My Journal
I was a retirement planner for a good 25 years, and I noticed that retirement and having a good life is not just about money. The people that I’ve worked with and all the financial advisors at that time all spoke only about money. So, I thought about what I could do. That is why I started the Rock Your Retirement Podcast back in 2016. After which, I started interviewing people and what I’ve found that there are actually 6 areas of life that make a good life and retirement.
- Significant Other
- Purpose in Life
In the journal, people actually track these areas every day. You would give yourself a small goal each day. The first thing you would do is write down in the morning something that you’re grateful for. A visiting pastor from a congregation I kept on finding things you are grateful for said that, start the first day with something that starts with a letter A, and then on the next day finding something with a letter B. For example, let’s say on the first day, you’re grateful for Apples and on the second day, you’re grateful for the bench that you sit on in the park. And on the third, you’re grateful for cantaloupe. So, that’s kind of a good way to try to remember what you’re grateful for. This journal is not meant to spend hours on, it’s meant to be something quick in the morning and quick in the evening. Then you write a goal in either all six of the pillars.
How Can You Be Happy with Life and Retirement?
From the Rock Your Retirement Show, I’ve interviewed so many people. Basically, what you have to do is you have to build that support system before you retire. But if you’ve already retired, and it’s too late to build that support, don’t worry, you could still build a support system but it really helps to start getting friends outside of work a year or two before you retire. One way that many of my guests have done this is through a website called Meetup.com. Sign up for a free account there and with that account, you can find meetups that are in person. Even though the program is online, you’re actually meeting persons. After that, you can search for something that you enjoy. Let’s say you like to hike, or bicycle, or garden, or like to read, these types of activities, there are other people in your city that like to do it to.
Social and Family Issues
We all have family issues. It’s hard because you don’t pick your family. God sorts of pick who your family is going to be and we all are there in the same house at one point but we all have our different perspectives.
I am not the expert at this, but that is why I try to make a little short goal every day of how I am going to be better.
Keeping Your Parents Safe at Homes
When I say keeping your parents safe at home, I’m talking about when they get too elderly, when things become dangerous for people to live by themselves. For example, in my generation, we have a lot of kids that are in college that we are still kind of supporting maybe not financially but emotionally and we have parents that are getting elderly, getting frail, they might have Parkinson’s disease or dementia. So, that is part of family issues as well. Trying to keep your family safe.
Life and Retirement: What People Need to Know Before Facing It
Before you retire, you need to know that depending on the type of job that you have, it might not be all roses. You might be busier in retirement than when you were working but unless you have something that is your purpose that you can replace that feeling of working, you might have problems adjusting. For some people their purpose is their grandkids, for some is their volunteer work. You have to figure out what your purpose is in life and retirement. God put us on Earth to do something. What is that something that God put you on Earth to do?
I had a guest on my show who said that anybody can have sex. Even if you physically can’t do it, we still need that physical touch and that physical connection that we get when we have sex. It doesn’t matter how old you are and it doesn’t matter if you’re frail. There are ways for you to have a sexual connection. Sex is a very important part of our life and when God gives us bodies to enjoy. He didn’t give us bodies to go out and desecrate them, but He gave us this body that we are supposed to enjoy with our life partner.
Mentioned in this Episode:
Six Pillars of Retirement
The Baby Boomer’s 30-Day Journal
As we’re getting ready to make major life changes, we’re consulting with an expert on making the next phase of life the best it can be. Kathe Kline of RockYourRetirement.com and The Rock Your Retirement Podcast joins us to talk about more than finances moving into “after work years”. Kathe shares with us great tips about being prepared for retirement, planning together, not being tied to “stuff”, and Meetup.com.
There are so many people that don’t want to retire. Take my husband, for example, Les is financially able to retire, he doesn’t work per se, for money, but he does a lot. He’s on the board of a couple of companies, he does a ton of work even though sometimes these companies make money than we’ll get something for it. He’s considered retired, but he’s not sitting around watching Westworld. You got two types of people. People that can financially retire and people that have done nothing. People who have done no thought at all are hurting.
Sacrificing in Retirement
In one of my episodes, Wendy Holt made a career change. She was living in Los Angeles and she was in a high-powered job then one day. She just said, “You know what? We’re moving.” So, she and her husband moved to Costa Rica together. Giving up their jobs in the States. The result was that she is loving the move, having a bed-and-breakfast. It’s kind of like she can work whenever she wants. But even though she’s having a great time abroad, she gave up a lot of stuff. In Costa Rica, they don’t have the Internet the way that we do and they just don’t have what we have here. There is something to be said to somebody who can do that, who can say goodbye to all their stuff.
Hank and Petra live differently than most people in their socio-economic place. Hank drives a 12-year-old pick-up truck named Elmer. Things like that, they can see what Wendy Holt is going through and they think they too could have retired early because they don’t live in extravagant lifestyles.
Getting Rid of Unwanted Stuff
On the Rock Your Retirement Show, I also talk about how to get rid of unwanted stuff because we are emotionally attached to our stuff and some of those have personal memories for us. The problem is how are we going to get rid of those stuffs, because at some point you’re either going to move into a smaller place or you’re going to die and then somebody else is going to be stuck going through your stuff.
I have so many friends that over the years; They got a new car every two to four years. And I’m like, do you realize what an impact that is putting in your life and not only that, you know how many marriages break up. A lot of that has to do with money stress. People are just stressed out. When you have the house, car, cable payment, the payment on your boat, your storage building, all these payments it adds a lot of weight on your shoulder.
When you are debt free, that removes the stress off your shoulders. Less stress on your relationship, less stress on yourself, you are probably not going to get sick. Just like cancer is caused by stress.
There’s a site called Meetup.com, and I had 3 guests on my show talked about it. Basically, Meetup is a place online to meet in person. Let’s say you want to write a book, you can start a Meetup for aspiring authors and you can get together once a month or whenever you want. When my husband Les and I got married, we didn’t have a lot of couple friends. So, I started one which is for married couples or people who have been together for two years and we met a bunch of friends that way. You can do anything you want like going to free concerts or tennis. The person who starts the thread will be the one to pay for it and it’s about $15 a month. If you want to find people that are in your same situation and want to do the same things, I highly recommend it.
The retirement process all comes down to just being proactive. People who aren’t remotely prepared for retirement financially, those people just weren’t very proactive about it. And Hank and Petra are being proactive about retirement because they’re doing something about it.
If you don’t have that need of being able to put clothes on your body, food in your might, or a roof over your head, you’re not going to be worried about Meetup. You’re not going to be worried about some other things that I talk about on my show. But, if you have that taken care of, if you got the basic needs then there are other needs that you need to be met and no one’s talking about it. That is why I do talk about those things. I’m not an expert on that field but I have guests on my show that can share their thoughts about retirement.
Phases of Retirement
The Go-Go Years – Meaning you’re off doing things, taking trips, you’re learning and all that kind of stuff. Those are the Go-Go Years because you are going.
Slow-Go Years – That’s when things slow down.
No-Go Years– That’s when you’re too frail to go.
While you’re still young, that’s when you want to do the things that you want to do. Get out there and do whatever makes you feel alive.
Mentioned in this Episode:
Retire at Age 40 – Episode 9
Hillbilly Nerd Talk
This post of Retirement and Retirement Lifestyle first appeared on http://RockYourRetirement.com
How to Deal with Social Loneliness after Retirement
Dealing with social loneliness after retirement is very difficult if you do not have people who cheer you up or support you or inspire you. Janelle Anderson is with us on this fourth episode of co-hosting the show and we will be talking about how to deal with social loneliness after retirement. This is also applicable pre-retirement!
Janelle works with women as a Certified Professional Coach through her business, Emerging Life Coaching. She typically works with women who are transitioning into a new season in life, whether that is from the “busy mother raising children season” to an “empty nest” season or from “busy career life” to the season of retired life. Janelle helps them discover a new game to play and who they truly want to be in this “third act of life.” Her work with clients includes one-on-one private coaching sessions, as well as coaching groups, workshops, and personal development classes.
Nourish your relationship
People are building relationships at work but they do not nourish that relationship outside of work. After retirement, that relationship dies and now you’re alone. It may lead to intense loneliness. Loneliness can cause a lot of problems like isolation, depression, and early death.
The Harvard Men Study
There was a study called the “Harvard Men Study” where they follow 268 men from their 30s to 70s to see how successful or happy they were. They wanted to see what are the characteristics of those who are happier and more successful in life compared to those who don’t. The one that came to the top is called “love-full stop”. In other words, it is love (personal relationships and connections).
Start looking for new friends to defeat social loneliness!
If you don’t have relationships now, you should take a look or make a list! Relationships that feed your soul, nourish you, support you, those are the ones you should be looking for. Church, joining clubs, classes are good places to find relationships. For the ones you currently have, ask yourself if you are nourishing that relationship. Are you still doing activities together outside of work? If not, then it may be a good time to start that now. Make time for your friends.
Here are some ideas where you can meet new people
One good place/website to meet people in your area is Meetup.com. I met so many of my best friends in Meetup. You can create a meetup group (with a fee, if you’re the host) or you can just join existing groups.
In Janelle’s case, her church started a dinner fellowship. She became close with a couple of couples because of that. What’s good about it is that you cannot choose who you’re going to be grouped with. They will be the one to choose it. It’s really cool because you get to meet new people.
Spend time with your friends
You do not have to go out with your friends every single day. You may go out one a week or once a month and catch up. Take turns in being the host. Janelle’s daughter does “neighborhood dinner” where she invites some of her neighbors so that she could get to know them.
Meet new people by volunteering
Volunteering is another great way to find relationships. There are 3 places I found where you can volunteer if you haven’t volunteered before.
1. VolunteerMatch.org – they’ll send you volunteer gigs near your zip code
3. Points of Light.org
There are many places where you can volunteer. Check our episode about doing Seasonal Jobs.
One way of dealing with social loneliness is by doing seasonal jobs.
Ted came onto my show as a guest to talk about stages of life, namely the 6 stages of retirement. Mr. Carr is a podcaster himself, with the show, Retirement Journeys, which discusses similar topics as this show, but he also includes financial topics on his show.
In case you’re wondering, the stages of life (retirement life) include:
- Retirement Routine
- Termination of Retirement (death)
Ed was young (mid-50s) when he retired in 2010 from a biotech company in San Francisco. Because so many people had asked him how he was able to retire so young he decided to take his story online.
Let’s look at some of these stages of life that Ted went through:
This is the time while you are working that you are saving and investing for the time when you will be able to stop working. Ted did a good job at this, or he wouldn’t have been able to retire in his mid-50s. Many people don’t plan far enough in advance, for whatever reasons, and so the other stages of life become more difficult for them. However, that’s not what the Rock your Retirement show is all about so we’ll let you reach out to your financial adviser for help with this.
This is fun for most, but can be the shortest stage of life (retirement life) for many. That’s because it’s really only a day, a week, a month, or six. A retirement date. The retirement stage of life is the party. You may go out to dinner with your work buddies. Or you might have a cake on your last day of work. The parties, balloons, and dinners have become a rite of passage for our actual retirement date.
It can be a second “honeymoon” where you hike, garden, bicycle or create art. Many people read or catch up on their yard work.
Ted took the “honeymoon” path when he first retired, and he describes this in his blog:
“After I retired in May 2010, I took the “honeymoon” path. In Retirement Journeys, I refer to this as “Arriving in Retirement”, a bridge from work life to retirement life. My wife and I moved from the Bay Area to Arizona in June 2010. Our first few months were spent settling into a new house and community. We had many home improvement projects to work on. We returned to the Bay Area frequently. When I look back at our calendar, I am reminded of the variety of ways that we spent our free time. We attended financial seminars, concerts, car auctions, baseball games and community-based meetings. In May 2011 we bought hybrid bikes and began riding once or twice a week”.1
But there is only so much hiking, gardening, and bicycling you can do. So that led Ted to the next stage of retirement:
This is the letdown stage of life. The honey moon is over. It’s when many retirees become depressed. They can feel lonely, bored, useless, and disillusioned. When they were working, people returned their phone calls. People respected them. Now, in this stage, many feel disrespected.
It’s this stage of life that the Rock Your Retirement show tries to help out.
Ted went through this stage too, as we discussed in the interview. In 2011 he started worrying about whether he had made the right decision. He didn’t feel productive and started writing in his journal to vent. For many, when they hit this stage, marriage problems can ensue.And it was affecting Ted’s marriage. So he looked at some preemptive steps:
- Deeper Confrontation
Because Ted had started the look inward in this stage of life, he was able to progress to the next stage of life called re-orientation.
Not everyone gets to this stage. In order to get through it, you need to re-examine your role in life. You need to ask yourself what your new purpose in life is. And you need to find out if you are still useful in some way. Ted had to answer the question, “Who am I, now?”
Before he could answer that question, Ted took inventory of his life. He needed to find out why he was so unhappy. Was it missing his paycheck? Missing the actual work itself? What was it?
In Ted’s case, he discovered that he had negative feelings toward his alcoholic father. He read the book, Forgiveness is a Choice, by Robert D Enright. He worked through its exercises.
Ted started volunteering at a local museum. It gave him purpose and responsibility. This helped him ease into the next stage of life, retirement routine.
Mr. Carr calls this “Retirement 2.0” This is where you are living a comfortable and rewarding lifestyle. It can mean a daily run, volunteer time, or whatever your daily routine is. For Ted, it means working on his podcast, his blog, and his volunteer work.
Thank goodness Ted hasn’t reached this stage, but he lives by the quote, “Dream as if you’ll live forever. Live as if you’ll die tomorrow.” James Dean
Ted Carr can be reached at www.retirementjourneys.com
- The 6 Stages of Retirement – Retirement Journeys, The 6 Stages of Retirement, http://retirementjourneys.com/2015/07/the-6-stages-of-retirement/