Victory Lap Retirement: Live Your Best Life Now!

“It’s my life

It’s now or never

I ain’t gonna live forever

I just want to live while I’m alive”

-It’s My Life by Bon Jovi (fellow boomer)

I’m thinking about using the above song as our Victory Lap Retirement (VLR) rallying cry, it’s simple, gets the point across and who doesn’t like Bon Jovi? Please note the absence of the word “retirement” in the lyrics. The song reminds us that now, not tomorrow, is the time to take back control of our life and start living the way that we always wanted to but going through “The Big Dip”  never had the time or chance. Continue reading “Victory Lap Retirement: Live Your Best Life Now!”

Victory Lap Question – When You Retire Where Do All Your Friends Go?

This question comes up at many presentations I make on Victory Lap Retirement. A strong social network is key to our happiness and longevity. Friendships enrich our lives we should always look to build our social network and build relationships with people we care about.

The challenge for all of us is that we are so busy working and nurturing our family, we can sometimes underinvest in our friendships. Our relationships with friends can also suffer when we are stressed out and in some cases pull back from friends, after all who wants to be a “downer” to our friends Continue reading “Victory Lap Question – When You Retire Where Do All Your Friends Go?”

Hard Way vs.  Smart Way

One of the mistakes I made transitioning into my own Victory Lap was that I didn’t take any time off to regroup and refresh. I was suffering from “sudden retirement shock”. I wasn’t thinking clearly and I did what I always do when things are going off side, I roll up my sleeves and worked harder. I decided to go into full new business mode, I spent the better part of three years in a cave writing a book and trying to figure things out. Sure things worked out well in the end but it took a lot of time, researching, learning what I needed to know and now looking back I realize that it really didn’t have to be as hard as it was.

I also have a bad habit of always going it alone,  something I developed while working at the Corp., a John Wayne thing. I believed that asking for help was a weakness and it made me look vulnerable. I always took the hard way and would try and figure it all out by myself. That kind of thinking resulted in me not creating and benefitting from mentors. This was a major mistake I made in my career. Life could have been so much easier if only I had been more open minded and willing to ask for help and advice. Continue reading “Hard Way vs.  Smart Way”

Victory lap Lifestyle Profile #2

My mentor Ernie Zelinski put me onto Joe Udo’s website retireby40.org a couple of years ago and I’ve been a faithful follower ever since.

Joe retired from his engineering career to become a stay at home dad/blogger at the age of 38. His reasons for leaving the corporate world were similar to mine, job stress was negatively affecting his health, but he found a way to escape from the corp. 20 years earlier than I did. I would have launched my own Victory Lap a lot sooner if his blog was around when I joined the working world.

Working for a corp. may have been easier if we did not accept the traditional view of a career, which is work for the same company until you retire, get your pension and wait for your final sunset. Both Joe and I feel that we’d rather not work for someone else, but rather chart our own course.  Working for yourself is often a harder path to take but the rewards are much more satisfying. Continue reading “Victory lap Lifestyle Profile #2”

Learn to Play The Long Game

Today’s article is the first in a series written by Simon Chan who started his own VLR earlier this year after working for 20 years in the financial services industry. He has a broad base of experience with the subjects of pre-retirement and financial independence having worked in multiple businesses such as banking, wealth management, insurance and group retirement benefits. Most recently Simon was the head of business strategy for the Canadian Retail Business for a global insurer. In his role, he became interested in how technology, globalization and the rapidly changing environment is impacting the lives of millennials. In short Simon knows his stuff, is a great guy and wants to help.

I believe it’s important that we understand the new challenges that will be faced by our kids and grandkids in the years ahead. It won’t be easy but we can succeed if we all work together. -Mike  Continue reading “Learn to Play The Long Game”

Time To Stop Following The Retirement Herd

We are all social animals we crave interaction and generally don’t like being alone. We crave that feeling of togetherness being part of something bigger,  the added comfort and safety that comes with being part of a group or a  herd. The herd protects individuals from being singled out, and in the animal kingdom provides safety from being killed by a predator.

Many people have developed a “herd” mentality in life deriving comfort by going with the flow and if everyone else is going in one direction they must know something that we don’t. It is easier not to complicate things by forging our own path based on what we learn or believe. What happens if we are wrong and the herd is right?

When it comes to retirement the “herd” has been doing this retirement thing for a long time. So they must be right, right?

Continue reading “Time To Stop Following The Retirement Herd”

Blue Zones And Victory Lap Lifestyle

Most retirement books are focused solely on the financial aspect of retirement but as many of us are now learning there is much more to a successful retirement. The ultimate goal in retirement should be a simplistic, low stress, healthy, fulfilling lifestyle. This will ultimately optimize the quality of our remaining years. Stop believing that the more money you have saved, translates into a better retirement. Life doesn’t work that way.  Continue reading “Blue Zones And Victory Lap Lifestyle”

Getting Your Confidence Back

I rarely get this question when I give my Victory Lap presentations, but I know it is top of mind for many in the audience and I suspect for many of you reading. I know many of the people I speak with did not really want to stop working. Many have worked at the same career for years and now they are scared/uncertain about the future. The question they want to ask, which I will ask for them is: “Am I good enough to get hired again?”

 

Continue reading “Getting Your Confidence Back”

Every Picture Tells a Story

 

 

 

Another RRSP season is now behind us and I don’t know if it’s just me but this one seemed more low key than usual. Maybe Mr. Trump was hogging all the airwaves this time around?

What concerns me is that the advertisers continue to sell us a version of retirement that doesn’t reflect the current reality for many people. The images of the carefree happy couple sitting on a beach while sipping on a strawberry daiquiri, or the couple sailing on a yacht, smiling with the sun shining and the wind blowing through their hair.           Continue reading “Every Picture Tells a Story”

A Victory Lap Lifestyle – Profile #1

I enjoy learning about and sharing stories of real people doing interesting things. These stories serve to remind me what’s possible when you live intentionally and make healthful lifestyle choices. We can learn from these people and use them as inspiration, if they can do it, there is no reason why we can’t do it too!

Here Is A Story About Carol And George

Continue reading “A Victory Lap Lifestyle – Profile #1”