I have now been “retired” from my full-time professional job for several years, and have had the opportunity to spend my time in a much different way. I have bought into the idea of having a “portfolio” of endeavors, some which pay for my time and others which do not.
I was introduced to this new approach through Encore NEO, a non-profit focused on assisting individuals 50 years and older to “craft meaningful careers and
satisfying lifestyles for the second halves of their lives”.
In my case, my “portfolio” consists of the following:
- traditional part-time employment (around 20 hrs. per week in retail customer service jobs)
- volunteering (on the Board of Encore NEO)
- freelance “gigs” (as an HR consultant)
I still have free time to enjoy golf, hiking, traveling, and reading, with a little time left over for chores (laundry, cleaning, groceries, etc.).
Being old enough for Medicare coverage (over 65), I do not have to worry about health insurance; that eliminates the need to work full-time, which, admittedly, makes this arrangement possible.
My wife and I sold our house of 32 years in 2018 and downsized into a condo. Part of the process was to rid ourselves of unnecessary “stuff” (which took three years), things we either hardly ever used or would not need in our new living arrangement (condo living eliminates the yard work and external home maintenance). This has simplified our lives considerably, freeing up my time for the “portfolio” endeavors.
I am finding part-time work to be very enjoyable. As opposed to my original full-time HR and consulting career, I do not bring the job home with me. It is less stressful while still providing a feeling of accomplishment and value in my contribution to the customers and the employer. I have also been fortunate to find the part-time work close to home, eliminating the time I used to spend sitting in traffic going to and from the office.
A further new endeavor for me is this blog, which has led to writing a book. I joined the Legacy Writers group sponsored by Encore NEO and the Geauga County Public Library, and learned how to start a blog and how to blog to a book. And it’s free! This has proven to be an inspiring venture and a whole lot of fun.
Maybe best of all, I am free to modify my “portfolio” as conditions and my interests change. I am not relying on any of the pieces to maintain my lifestyle, thanks to downsizing and simplifying.
Getting old has its benefits.