I’ve heard that some baby boomers feel like they should be winding down things on their to-do list, and I just want to emphatically state that it’s not going to happen in my world.
What? Winding down because you don’t want to add any new tasks or goals to your life? You want to coast the rest of the way? You don’t need the distractions?
I call bullshit. You do what you want but I think it’s important to keep adding things to the list rather than letting it atrophy. I’ve got places to go, new things to learn, more books to read, people to meet. I want to expand the to-do list not shrink it. If you’re finally at a place where you can do some of the things you always wanted to do, winding down the to-do list is totally counterintuitive.
Make no mistake –– I’m not against occasionally sitting back and contemplating my navel. I’ve earned that privilege. Maybe an end-life of contemplation made sense when life expectancy was a lot lower age than it is today, but if you’re going to live to 100 do you really think it’s rational to loaf all the way there from age 65? That’s a lot of downtime.
I thought baby boomers were going to be different when it came to retirement. Golf and shuffleboard were on the way out and personal improvement and a more hyperactive lifestyle were on the way in. No gold watch after 30 years of service with the same company, and that was okay because our varied worklife was more interesting and rewarding. Once again, boomers were going to make different choices from what our parents did. Slowing down was not going to be the goal of our retirement.
While the idea of just wasting time may sound like a plus if you’ve been a striver all your life, this striver thinks it’s exactly what it sounds like. A waste of time. You could be trying to learn a new language, taking a welding course, fusing glass, or getting better at Scrabble. In fact, it’s time to create a bucket list, not time to shorten your to-do list.