Stan's World - The Good LifeSubmitted by S. F. Ehrlich Associates, Inc. on October 1st, 2018
September 30, 2018
I was standing at my desk reading an article titled “What is Your Good Life” when the phone rang. It was my wife, asking if I wanted to come home to have lunch with our daughter and granddaughter who had dropped by. I logged off my computer and promptly walked out the door. Apparently, my definition of my good life includes having lunch with a three-year-old who still thinks I’m funny and wants to play with me.
The author of the AARP article1 I was reading, Sally Balch Hurme, wrote Get the Most Out of Retirement: Checklist to Happiness, Health, and Purpose, so I’ll assume she has spent considerable time trying to figure out what makes retirees happy. But is happiness limited to retirees; can’t you enjoy Your Good Life as you navigate through life?
I think the perception that you grind through 40 or more years of work until you get to enjoy life in retirement is a false notion. Sally Balch Hurme asks a few pointed questions that might help you find your good life, whether you’re retired or not.
- Do I have a close family or dear friends around me?
- Do I work at staying involved and connected with others?
- Do I feel I am contributing to a better world?
- Am I learning new things or having new experiences?
- Do things make me smile or laugh frequently?
- Do people in my community share values similar to mine?
- Do I spend time doing what gives me pleasure?
One day, I was stopped by a man while I was walking down the street. He walked right up to me and said: “I know you.” I didn’t recognize him, so I apologized and asked him how we know each other. He said: “Every morning, I’ve stood in the line to take the bus to the City, and we’ve all watched you walk by wondering where you were going.”
I replied that my office was down the block and that I also looked over and felt empathy for everyone standing there. He laughed and said “Now we both know what the other was thinking,” and added that everyone in line was jealous of my morning commute. With the biggest of smiles, he also told me he retired the day before, after commuting to the City for 40 years. That happened to be the first day he didn’t have to commute to work.
Even if you’re one of those commuters waiting in line for the bus every morning, how can we help you get that big smile on your face?