So, you are looking forward to retirement. “Roll on 65,” you say.
Over the five previous issues in this series we introduced this topic and looked at the Big Picture, Health, Finances and Changing Environment. In the next, and final issue we will summarise what we have discussed so far on what can be a scary season of life for many men and women. As with any season of life you need a life plan and the third age is no different. This season of life should be the most influential and rewarding.
So, the big WOUNDS OF LIFE picture is;
WOUNDS OF LIFE
Our human failings often result in us carrying to varying degrees, emotional damage from experiences of life. It could be an economic loss, a relationship loss, a grievance with another person that we won’t let go, a broken relationship with a family member, friend or spouse/partner, or a perceived personal failure that we still beat ourselves up on. The burden of such things can cause anxiety, anger and ultimately depression. We were not designed to carry heavy emotional burdens. To live well in the Third Age you need to deal to all these issues. You may need the help of others or a professional to bring peace where there is chaos.
As mentioned previously we can all carry the loss of experiences or events that we may never action, or people that we may never meet. There needs to be a reality check as part of your life plan and choose to let these unfulfilled dreams or opportunities go so they don’t become a burden.
There is a need in this season to prepare for departing this world. It is good to leave all matters tidy and in order. Leave a Will. Make sure your spouse/partner is protected and provided for. Review the need for a Power of Attorney should you or your partner/spouse become incapacitated. Leave a record of assets. Leave a record of passwords. Leave a statement of wishes re any assets. Detail specifics regarding funeral and burial. Dump what you don’t need and what others don’t want. Save your love ones from doing it. There is no point hanging onto things, which in reality is a hanging onto the past. Move on and be all that you are purposed to be in this season of life.
In this season of life, you need to check and review your world view. Your basis of life belief and operation may have seemed ok when you were young, but now that you are entering the last years of your life does it still hold as true? Are you happy with what you believe happens to you after you die? Ten years ago I had my first trial with cancer, and while undergoing chemotherapy I entered a state of neutropenia. This is a state in which your immune system collapses and you are susceptible to catching an infection that the body can’t defeat, and potentially you could die within a period of three hours. While in this state I was in an isolation ward at Auckland Hospital and I said to God – well Lord I may be with you in the next three hours. I felt absolutely at peace and was happy to go, but also preferring to stay longer.
Questions to ponder
So you are looking forward to retirement. “Roll on 65,” you say.
Over the four previous issues we introduced this topic and looked at the Big Picture, Health and Finances. Over the next three issues we will continue to expand on what can be a scary season of life for many men and women. As with any season of life you need a life plan and the third age is no different. This season of life should be the most influential and rewarding.
So the BIG CHANGING ENVIRONMENT PICTURE is:
DISRESPECT FROM YOUNGER PERSONS
Over recent years, our society has trained young people to think for themselves, seek information from Dr Google and by default the wisdom of older people is ignored, as we are deemed to be behind the times. While younger people’s actions can seem disrespectful, sometimes it is a reflection of the environment. As an example - when children have their own kids, they will consult Dr Google before they ask for advice from their parents. The “wisdom of living life well” has been overlooked.
Entering the third age is a good time to review current housing. Is a multi-storied house, a half-acre section, a house on the side of a hill, a house with 5 bedrooms the right choice now? As part of my plan and budget for retirement, should I downsize my home, or move to a cheaper location, to release capital to live better in the third age?
At some time in the third age a couple will experience a season of increased caring for the other (or there may be multiple seasons). The marriage vow that used to be in vogue “until death do us part” will be put to the test in this season. Talk about it with your partner.
The third age is marked with more frequent instances of losing people (friends, siblings, wider family, spouse/partner) who are precious to you. One has to learn to grieve well and healthily. If you are struggling with a bereavement, get help. There is a season to grieve but there is a season to move on and live.
As you enter the third age it is a season to ensure both spouses/partners can live well when a bereavement happens to one member. Typically men will need to learn how to cook quality meals for themselves, clean the house, do washing and look after their health. Women need to know all about routine house and vehicle maintenance, finances and insurance. Both parties need to know all the passwords! It is a season to mentor each other in areas where duties may have been segregated.
Questions to ponder