The experience I hear most often described at the launch of 3rd life (aka retirement) is a combination of a little bit of anxiety and a lot of delightful anticipation. There are daydreams of never having to report to that boss again. Ever. Then the retirement honeymoon begins with such delectable moments as ignoring your alarm clock in the morning, shopping in the middle of the day and booking flights on Wednesdays just because you can. Encores in this stage glow. They are HAPPY and assume this is what life will be like for the rest of their 3rd life. But then sometime between 2 weeks and 24 months, they start to feel restless, bored or dissatisfied with their days. Something is missing. Scary thoughts creep in. “Is this it?” “Retirement is not as fun as I thought it would be” and “What am I missing here?” Just like the honeymooning couple returning home to the day-to-day life of budgets, chores and work needs to now establish their real life as a married couple, the post honeymoon encore is moving into a completely normal next stage of trying to figure out who they want to be and what they want to do. This is the disillusionment stage, and nobody talks about it. For some this can be a rough time.
Part of the problem is time management (or the lack of time management). Having too much time can be as challenging—or more—than having not enough. No clear work hours or before-work and after-work routines. You have all the time in the world. This is where most people get tripped up. Suddenly, they’re staring at 168 hours a week and 52 weeks a year that they are 100% responsible for and must manage in a way that leaves them happy and engaged. This is completely new territory for most people.
From my many workshops and one-on-one coaching, I have created a step-by-step program for encores to learn very specific and proven time management strategies. It might sound crazy and counter intuitive to be focusing on time management during 3rd life. But it works. I will be offering these in the form of 5-day challenges online. The process of time management training involves not only learning practical strategies but it also invites personal reflection and as a result, increased awareness and skillfulness for the retiree. Over the course of a year, a new pattern and eventually a more satisfying life can emerge. Try it and see for yourself!
Finding tricks for inviting forever more satisfaction and happiness in 3rd life is what I am all about. I am obsessed with and having a blast being on the lookout, discovering the best strategies, and sharing them with you.