The two most important days in your life are the day you were born and the day you find out why you were born.

Personally, I know I was put on this Earth to teach other business leaders and working professionals. 

Life is about purpose —finding your purpose and living your purpose both in your professional life and your personal life.

Purpose is what gives us motivation and makes our working lives enjoyable. And as we spend a large chunk of our adult lives at work, purpose in work is fundamental. But as many Baby Boomers are starting to realize, when hitting retirement age, what fills that gap left behind?

Many individuals spend the last few years of their work life just waiting for retirement, for the day when they no longer have to go into the office, sign on, or report to a manufacturing floor, and can finally pursue their other interests. But when that day comes, many are at a loss. I have seen many retirees walking around nonchalantly as if they have nowhere to go and no excitement.

When asked, “What are your interests? What are your hobbies?” The answer is typically “I don’t know.”

When you spend your time constantly busy, your world becomes very small, and it can be a struggle to open your horizons again to look forward to the future.

Many retirees say they have been too busy and do not know what they are interested in. This is a rear-view-mirror type of perspective and not a forward view of the future that lies in front of them.

The big question is: How do you correct this mindset?

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Be of service to others

Many individuals spend their lives chasing the definition of “success,” whether that means having a lot of money, getting a promotion, owning their own business, or raising a family. But success is not a stagnant entity. Is what you thought success would be in your 20s still valid in your 40s? Will it be the same in your 70s and your 80s? Absolutely not. Revisit and redefine your view of success.

But even more important than success is significance, as I have mentioned to the many readers of this blog on more than one occasion. Success is something we chase for ourselves, but significance is what we do for others. I have spoken about success versus significance a lot in the past, and how service to others will bring longevity in business and profits. However, this principle applies directly to our personal lives and retirement as well.

When you encroach upon retirement age, you have lived a full life and have an endless supply of wisdom to show for it. Every one of us has talents and skills that we can share with others, and by serving others, we achieve a sense of purpose with our lives. Aim to live not just a successful life at the time of retirement but a significant one as well, in which you continue to serve others and better the world.

My guide to a prosperous retirement

You may not think your future looks bright because you are older, you have no hobbies, and feel the “best days are behind you.” That belief is a Soft Trend based on an assumption about the future, and not a certain fact.

The beauty of Soft Trends is that they can be changed. By changing how you think about the future and what is possible, you can design a better one for yourself. Below are some tips to help you change your Futureview® and leverage that aforementioned Soft Trend to your advantage, designing a significant and successful retirement:

Learn something new

Back in my 20s, I realized that many people do not know all of what type of drive is inside them, even by the time they hit retirement.

We all have unique talents and gifts internally that we will not find if we do not look for them. Therefore, I made a commitment to myself to learn one new thing every year. One year I learned to cook, another I learned to scuba dive, and another I learned the art of filmmaking.

I did not have a list of everything I wanted to learn, just that I wanted to learn something new every year. So, how did I find each thing I wanted to learn? I kept an opportunity antenna up in the back of my head, in similar ways that I teach business leaders to keep up in everyday operation. If I saw a notice for guitar lessons and it stuck with me for a while, I knew that was what I would learn the next year.

I fully believe that we all have drive inside of us; you just have to find it. So, I encourage you to make a commitment to yourself to learn one new thing every year and uncover what may be fulfilling to you in ways you never expected.

Experiment in life

In addition to learning something new every year, I believe that you also need to experiment and play with the world around you.

Read something new that you typically would not like, such as philosophy or astronomy.

Read articles about the world and how things work in areas you do not understand.

Limit your television entertainment or watch something different once in a while to see what happens.

Get into interesting conversations — not about people, places, and things, but about concepts, ideas, insights, and foresights.

These will be some of the most stimulating conversations you will ever have.

The key to never stopping learning is to experiment with new ideas.

You have nothing to lose, and for many, nothing but time in front of you!

Remember that everything is a ‘yet’

Many retirees think in absolutes. They speak about how things are instead of how they could be. “I don’t have hobbies.” “I don’t know what interests me.” When you think in absolutes, you are speaking of the past, and your mind is closed off to the future.

Instead, always add the word “yet” at the end. “I don’t have hobbies yet.” “I don’t know what my interests are yet.” Stop closing your mind to the future and, instead, open the door to endless opportunity with a positive Futureview.

Live with significance

Serving others is a fulfilling endeavor that gives purpose to our lives, so share those aforementioned years of wisdom you have developed throughout the course of your life, and apply them.

Consider volunteering to provide meaningful service to businesses, organizations, or individuals who need it most. Remember: This is all about elevating the significance of your retirement. When you elevate your significance, success and a brighter outlook on the future is guaranteed to follow.

Anticipate the future

Because several people look forward to retirement as a time they can finally relax and enjoy their life after what is perceived to be a lifetime of work, they can be shocked at the reality that retirement does not necessarily feel like a permanent vacation.

Going from a day filled with meetings and labor to a day of nothing can be a difficult transition and lead to a bleak outlook on the future.

But you are going to spend the rest of your life in the future, so you have to plan for it. We all start saving and investing early for financial stability in retirement, so do the same for your mental and personal future.

Ready to embrace a future filled with purpose and innovation? Stay ahead of the curve by exploring Daniel Burrus’ Top 25 Tech Trends List for 2024. Don’t miss out on the insights that could reshape your retirement and the world around you.

Download the list now and embark on a journey to anticipate, adapt, and thrive in the ever-evolving landscape of possibilities!

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