Why I will never really retire

In this report, I will explain why I will never really retire and why most people shouldn’t retire either.

Why I will never really retire

Retirement is defined as “leaving one’s job and ceasing to work.” It is true that I left my job, but I will never cease to work. Here is why I don’t think you should cease to work completely either.

I am not talking about getting another job. I am talking about finally getting the chance to answer the question you had when you were 10 years old. What am I going to do with my life? What am I authentically excited about? That is a question you may be able to finally answer once you don’t have to work anymore.

Once you quit what you must do in order to survive, you will finally have a chance to find out what your life is really about. Life is really just what you decide to do with your time. In retirement, your time is suddenly unbounded by your survival requirements. You finally have the chance to live a life that is meaningful to you because your time is suddenly free.

I got an email from someone that retired in Mexico about a year ago. He bought some land with a small house and renovated the house. He made the house perfect for his retirement. But once he finished the renovation, after a few months, he didn’t know what to do with himself. As he said, “I have no reason to get up in the morning other than to feed the cats.”

I believe with all of my heart, that if you don’t have anything to do when you get up in the morning, your retirement will not be as fun as you think. You need something in your life that you are excited about. Something that gets you up in the morning and makes you excited about your day. Hopefully, you will find something that you will love so much that you won’t even notice that time is passing while you are doing it. Has that ever happened to you?

We all have different dreams about what we will do in retirement. Some of us dream about doing nothing at all for the first time in our life. We think we will want to sleep until 10 AM every day. We imagine waking up late and sitting around in our robe all morning drinking coffee. Maybe watch some TV, some Netflix, and do nothing for hours at a time. Take a walk in the park? Go do lunch or just have food delivered?

But after a few weeks or months of doing nothing at all with our time, most of us will get bored eventually. And if we don’t identify something that gets us excited about how we are spending our time, we may eventually start to get old too quickly.

Boredom is not good at any age, especially not in retirement. Boredom is a slippery slope to an early grave. I am not telling you to just stay busy! I am talking about finding something that you are so excited about doing, you lose track of time.

When I was a boy, I would go inside my room and build model airplanes all day long without ever getting hungry or thirsty. Time just didn’t exist. My mom would yell out for me when it was time to eat and I wouldn’t even hear her. She would come into my room and wave her hand in front of my face. She was waiving at a fighter pilot building those airplanes, not me.

There is something we all know intuitively, and most of us have felt it at different times in our life. But many of us seem to forget about it when we start planning our retirement. Enthusiasm and passion arise in our life when we have a heartfelt purpose.

So if retirement is going to be more than just quitting your job and ceasing to work, what should it be? What should you strive for? How do you prepare yourself to live a long, happy, and healthy life in retirement?

I know what you may be thinking. I am not going to sit home. I am going to do all the things I wished I was doing when I was stuck at work. But I have some bad news for you. When you can golf every day, golfing may not be as fun, for some people. When you can fish every day, fishing may not be as fun, for some people. When you can do anything all day, every day, it may not be as fun as when you had to stop doing it to go to work on Monday.

You see, during your working years, all the fun stuff you loved was rationed to some extent. You could only do so much of it because you had to get up on Monday morning and go to work. But when you retire, many of the things you loved will not be rationed anymore.

When Monday morning never separates you from what you thought you loved while you were working, it may not seem as rare or exciting to you. That is when you will begin to crave a purpose for your life. That is when many decide to make their own life richer in some way by helping others.

Retirement is a time in your life when you are finally self-made. You are likely more in control of your time than you have ever been in your life. Retirement is a time when you finally have enough time to decide what your life is really about.

Think back to when you were young. Before you gave up your time for a job you needed to survive. Who were you? Were you a writer, were you a painter, were you a cook, were you a poet, were you muscle car lover, were you a historian, were you a ballerina?

I was a fighter pilot when I was 8 years old. I was a rock star when I turned 14. When I was 16, I actually started buying fixing-up, and selling used cars. Over the years, I worked for myself in a string of businesses. Some did well and others failed. I eventually took a job to pay the bills. I started working to survive.

But, as I worked for others, I started dreaming about traveling the world. I would work hard, save and invest, and travel the world once I retired. But while I waited, in my mind, I was already a world traveler. The job was just a temporary thing I was doing until my real life started.

If you follow my channel you will know that I was able to transition from the temporary job I needed to survive and start my real life as a world traveler. But I have never stopped working and this is why I will never stop working.

I feel like I am walking down a path that not many people have walked before. I am traveling the world on less money than I thought I would need when I retired. I have lived in 65 countries over the last 14 years. As I began to share this information online, people began to see value in it. I was doing what I loved while I shared what I learned with other people, like you, who watch my channel.

Traveling the world for cheap is fun. I was doing that for 9 years before I started this channel. But sharing what I am doing with other people brings another dimension to my life that traveling alone does not give me. Helping others with the information I learned traveling gives me a purpose.

People appreciate what I do and tell me I am helping them. They come up to me and thank me from time to time when they see me. Many leave comments of appreciation for what I do on my channel. So I feel like I am not just doing what I love but I am helping people in some small way. That is the heart-felt purpose that I did not feel when I was traveling quietly and anonymously.

That is why I will never stop making these videos and my eBooks about the best places in the world to retire cheap in paradise. The work I do is fulfilling and it gives purpose to my life. So while I could be at lunch now instead of typing this sentence, that would not be as fulfilling to me.

So in a way, both the travel and the feeling of purpose I get by helping others create passion and meaning in my life that would not be present if I quit working completely.

I received an email from a person recently that said I am not really retired because I am still working. She is right. I am still working. But I am doing what I love instead of sitting at that desk dreaming about what I love. And I feel like my life has some purpose now. So it doesn’t feel like work anymore.

So what I am recommending is that you do whatever you love most when you retire. Maybe recapture the dreams of your youth or pick a new dream. Then try to figure out a way to combine that with helping others in some small way. Then you will have a purpose-filled retirement.

You could do it for charity, for fun, or both. Maybe there is a way you can shine a light on the path you are walking so others can find it more easily. Maybe you could help others fulfill their purpose more easily.

Many people have lived many lives and know things they did not know when they were young. That is what happened to me. If you think about my life, I know a lot about travel and I share that. What is it you know that others could learn from you? Maybe that is your purpose?

I have a course that will teach you how to turn what you know into an online income stream. Feel free to click the link in the notes below this YouTube video to learn about that course called–The Hobby Income Course.

And make sure to grab a copy of my free eBook while you are here–How I Fired My Boss and Traveled the World for 14+ Years.    Thank you for stopping by to learn why I will never really retire.  

This is Dan of Vagabond Awake, the YouTube Channel for VagabondBuddha.com. The world is your home. What time will you be home for dinner?