Retirement Redesigned

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Saturday, June 22, 2024

Retirement Redesigned

HomeThe Weekly ResetDesigning a Lifestyle

Designing a Lifestyle

This post is a duplication of our newsletter, The Weekly Reset, where we review a key theme each week. In the spotlight this week: Designing A Lifestyle. Do you actively plan for the type of lifestyle you want in retirement? Or does your lifestyle follow as your life evolves?

A note from Johann

Lifestyle Design

Adapting to the way we live in retirement

Retirement is a momentous event for anyone. It signifies several major life changes, not the least of which is a change in the way a retiree lives. It could mean a move to the coast for a simpler, more relaxed lifestyle, or scaling down your present environment. By the time most of us retire, we often still live in the homes where we raised our families, which are suddenly much larger than we need and require too much effort and capital to maintain.

On a personal note, my wife Emma and I have sold our house in Johannesburg and we are on our way to establish our lives on a rental property in Stellenbosch. This has been a somewhat drawn-out process and not always an easy one. Our house in Melrose was on the market for two years and we eventually accepted a price for it that was way below what we reckoned it was worth, just to get the deal done. The actual removal was much assisted by a company that specializes in packing up properties and then handed over to the transport company, making it all a good deal easier.

When we started thinking seriously about this more than a year ago, our initial experience was that there was a wide range of suitable rental properties available. but things have changed in the last year. There has been a dramatic increase in people wanting to move to the Cape, and the real estate market has tightened considerably. Fortunately, we eventually found a nice place in a community that should work very well for us – and it will bring us close to our grandchildren.

The logistics and practical aspects of moving are being managed well enough, but the emotional and personal issues are another thing. We have lived happily in Johannesburg for over forty years. We know the place and have a great fondness for it. Uprooting is not so easy. But greater proximity to our family and grandchildren has been the primary motivation behind our move, and this is something that we are very excited about.

Many of our friends have moved to the Cape over the years. We count ourselves fortunate to have a welcoming group to shepherd us through the many adjustments to our new home, and we treasure having a friendly social foothold.

Moving to the Cape is a dramatic thing in our lives – one we know we are fortunate to do. We know of several South African families that are retired and moving to places life Australia, The UK and Canada, all to be with their children who are building their careers there. Adapting to retirement in this way must be a lot harder, as it requires adapting to new cultures and societal norms too.

These are some of the bigger shifts that we see retirees making. There are, of course, many others too. From down-scaling to opting for a minimalist or even mobile lifestyle, the options are about as endless as we are unique. Whichever lifestyle choice you make, try and do it with intention forward planning to make the process as enjoyable as possible.


Our top pick of the week:

Intentional Living vs Minimalism: What’s the Difference?

minimalism desk, clock, lamp and plant
Image as featured in article on Antimaximalist

“Intentional Living vs Minimalism. At first glance, these two lifestyles are very similar in the goals they achieve for you. Nonetheless, there are also slight differences as well. Knowing what they are may help you decide which approach works best for you.

What is an intentional lifestyle?

The intentional lifestyle involves making choices on purpose. You think through what you want to do, you plan how you’re going to do it, and then you do it.

What is a minimalist lifestyle?

Minimalism can be considered a form of intentional living. People who are minimalist are deliberate in their choices of removing the excess in their life and choosing to pursue things that are more meaningful.

How are intentional living and minimalism the same?

Intentional living and minimalism are the same in that they both involve making deliberate choices in pursuit of more joy and meaning in life.”

Click here to read the whole article on Antimaximalist

Our Spotlight video:

Designing a Lifestyle

Every week we highlight a topic relevant to retirement and our third chapter of life. This week our spotlight was on lifestyle design. Retirement in one of life’s big transitions. All the more reason to be proactive about it. Plan ahead and make sure you research the possible lifestyle options and alternatives available to you. Consider downscaling, moving and simply creating the life you have always imagined now that you are not bound by the constraints of job or geography.

Spotlight of the week

Other highlights of the week:

6 Ways to create and ideal retirement – by incorporating what you love about work

Elderly male working in a bakery
Images by Getty Images/iStockphoto as featured in original article by Market Watch

“I have read a lot of retirement books touting the “keys to a successful retirement.” Some have great ideas. But I think they miss a key ingredient. My contention: To have a successful retirement, we need to start with a proper understanding of work.

Admittedly, it’s a counterintuitive way of looking at retirement. But sometimes looking at a problem backward can help us find creative solutions. In other words, examine the opposite of retirement for lessons about retirement.

To that end, ponder this: What is it about work that’s rewarding that we never want to lose – and, once retired, what is it about work that we want to eliminate? If you can answer those two questions, you’ll be well on your way to designing the ideal retirement.

As I see it, work offers five rewards that we should strive to hang on to.

First, it allows us to feel part of something bigger than ourselves.
Second, I don’t think I’ve ever felt as alive as when I was fully engaged in creative learning at work.
Third, work provides us with a sense of identity.
Fourth, work creates social bonds with co-workers.
Finally, work provides income.

How can we synthesize these insights to design and ideal retirement? Here are my six suggestions:

  1. Ramp up creativity and learning.
  2. Redesign work.
  3. Redefine identity.
  4. Build deep friendships.
  5. Capture Kodak moments.
  6. Eliminate the toxins.”

Click here to read the article on Market Watch

Weekly Poll

Have you incorporated conscious breathing into your wellness routine?

A. I’ve never heard of it.
B. I do it now and then.
C. I’m a box breathing pro.

Click here to answer the question in our Facebook group

Last week’s poll: Do you actively plan the type of lifestyle you’ll have in the future?

Last week’s findings:
40% responded – I have a lifestyle in mind.
40% responded – I can see the life I want and actively plan to achieve it.
20% responded – Life happens and my lifestyle follows.

Most Popular Post of the Week

What retirement is like in 50 places around the world

Click here to read the article on Stacker

Most Popular Quote of the Week

“Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking.” Marcus Aurelius

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Elderly couple. Quote by Marcus Aurelius
Quote by Marcus Aurelius

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Johann is the founding partner of Reset Retirement where we focus on assisting people with planning for the non-financial aspects of their lives after full-time work. He had a long career in executive search and leadership as the founding partner and chairman of Heidrick & Struggles in South Africa where he was the head of the company’s board practice.