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Smelling the Roses

I had lunch yesterday with a colleague who has very recently retired. He is not that much older than me and I can honestly say he is one of the smarter people that I have come across in my work career.

Over the years he has always had the ability to get me thinking, and yesterday there were two specific things that got to me.

1. Only a few months into "retirement" he says that he has trouble understanding how he did his job. The pace, the unrelenting pressure, the competitiveness and the overwhelming need to do more and more and more ... he just doesn't understand how he managed.

I know myself ( see yesterday's entry) that I could spend 24 hours a day at the office and still not get my job done. I make time to support other initiatives ... the United Way campaign, our Industry Associations and to provide advice and support to some small start up type organizations. I still have a life ... I think! I enjoy the challenge and more importantly the "wins" in my job, but the pressure, pace and competitiveness is unrelenting.

So ... he got me thinking. How am I going to ensure that I smell the roses! That is something BIG to ponder.

2. Point number two was a reminder of an insurance (actuarial) study he sent me sometime ago. It demonstrates that for ever year a person works beyond their 55th birthday until retirement reduces their life expectancy by 2 years!

I Googled this study and found it ... Optimal Strategies for Creativity and Longevity ... see item number 2.

So ... once again the "grey matter" is working away, thinking and point number one above (pace, competitiveness, pressure) ... and now point number two (death). I will be 55 in two years time but I only feel 35, so maybe it doesn't apply to me!

See what I mean about this guy getting you thinking!

Happy retirement Bob!