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Top Ten Reasons to Retire – and Some Reasons Not To!

When I was young, I could easily think of a top ten reasons to retire including getting out of the rat race, no more commuting having unlimited time to park off, play golf, read, laze around, watch sport on TV and travel. Day after day being lazily consumed by all these pastimes.

However having now reached the age and having the opportunity I've decided … that kind of retirement can wait.

As I sit here today I certainly can't find my own top ten reasons to retire and the ones I had seem so trite. To wind down my life without any purpose or meaning is the furthest thought in my mind.

In a financial sense retirement is simply having enough money to live the rest of your life exactly how you choose.

However if retiring is never having to work and you believe Confucius who said "choose a work that you love and you won't have to work another day". If you accept this you can be retired at any time..

So for me in doing something I love, I'm not working. I'm building websites, I'm doing small business consulting – spending longer hours with strict deadlines but loving it! There is pressure, there are concerns but there is a sense of empowerment – everything I do and achieve is in my hands. 

So I'm retired but still working.

Does anyone have a top ten reasons to retire?

After looking quite hard these are some of the best reasons I can find:

  1. "Retirement has been a discovery of beauty for me. I never had the time before to notice the beauty of my grand kids, my wife, the tree outside my very own front door. And, the beauty of time itself" ~ Hartman Jule.
  2. It's the opportunity for a new beginning.
  3. Freedom to do and say what you want to without considering the consequences for your "job".
  4. Share your wealth. The ultimate example of this must be Bill Gates and Warren Buffet. Using their massive wealth to solve major issues facing the world. Increasing their effectiveness by mobilising other billionaires to do the same.
  5. Just because you can – you've achieved retirement – you now have the resources to live the rest of your life exactly how you choose.
  6. Show your gratitude for your success and pay it forward with your knowledge, skill and time. Do charity work, find a new purpose and make a difference.
  7. Retirement is a time to do what you want, when you want, where you want and how you want.
  8. "Retirement must be wonderful. I mean, you can suck in your stomach for only so long" ~ Burt Reynolds.
  9. "Life begins at retirement" ~ Author Unknown
  10. "Retirement . . . is when you stop living at work and begin working at living" ~ Unknown wise person.
Why bother trying to find the top ten reasons to retire?

When there are such compelling quotes about not retiring:

  1. "To retire is to begin to die" ~ Pablo Casals (Spanish Cellist and Conductor)
  2. "Retirement kills more people than hard work ever did" ~ Malcolm Forbes.
  3. "Never retire. Michelangelo was carving the Rondanini just before he died at eighty-nine. Verdi finished his opera Falstaff at eighty" ~ W. Gifford-Jones.
  4. "Retirement is the ugliest word in the language" ~ Ernest Hemingway.
  5. "Retired: too old to work — too young to die" ~ Author Unknown.
  6. "Don't simply retire from something; have something to retire to" ~ Harry Emerson Fosdick - American clergyman).
  7. "A whole generation of Americans will retire in poverty instead of prosperity, because they simply are not preparing for retirement now" ~ Scott Cook.
  8. "The boomers' biggest impact will be on eliminating the term 'retirement' and inventing a new stage of life... the new career arc" ~ Rosabeth Moss Kanter.
  9. "A perpetual holiday is a good working definition of hell" ~ George Bernard Shaw.
  10. Whatever you choose – make a difference "if you have much, give of your wealth; if you have little, give of your heart" ~ Arab proverb.

Thinking about the top ten reasons to retire I wondered whether retirement is a new beginning or the beginning of the end?