This is your very best investment for retirement
Is this your very best investment for retirement that you can have? Yes, being happy is the absolute best investment for retirement you can have. As important as how much you save for retirement. Invest the energy in making sure your share of happy is taken care of.
Sure some money is important. A way to live and have a home. However, do not spend so much time going for investments that you forget to keep your happy all shiny and strong.
A giant savings account does not necessarily make you happy. However, being happy can take a “not so giant” savings account and make it more workable during retirement time.
Happy is the child that has an for a friend an old sympathetic, encouraging mind, one eager to develop, slow to rebuke or discourage ~ Arthur Brisbane
This is true for us all
You could say the same for retirees. Especially the encouraging mind part. How have you chosen to spend your retirement days? Have you made the effort to keep your mind active? Allowed yourself to plan and dream about this time in your life? Allowed yourself to be happy?
When our mind is healthy and alive, our health stands a better chance. Are you aware of how much one plays off the other? How just one rotten daily lifestyle pattern affects the whole package? Sometimes it is easy to get off the schedule of normal activities.
When you are retired there is no one there to remind you. You do not have a boss. There is no time clock. No one to remind you what stinking thinking can do.
That is what happened not long ago. The casual conversation overheard while doing our grocery shopping for the weekend:
About “all those expensive rigs that would be storming through our peaceful part of the world. Getting out and getting muddy. Whoever heard of such? Jeeps are loud and unnecessary.”
Fortunately, the reply was, “We have our old family home here in town that we remodeled to a Bed and Breakfast booked for 5 days. That is a blessing.”
A bit of history
In the effort to have the most fun possible during retirement, Mr. B and I made the decision to move to the little town life. One on the north side of the Texas Hill Country. A decision I have not regretted.
Really enjoy the corner where we live, just out of sight from town. The quiet. The river just across the road.
Eyes on the future
All of these things allow me to imagine how it was when the settlers came across the country in search of a future. Fortunately, they were looking at this country through young eyes. Their eyes saw and appreciated what they saw.
Visions were created as they realized the life they could find here in the Texas Hill Country.
They did not come to retire. Families could be raised and wonderful lives lived.
Someone saw that in the year 2017 the world would need a place for a jeep rally! That country that is too rough to raise cattle or sheep was perfect for people who had a yen for excitement.
Someone who wanted to get out in the wild and challenge their all-terrain vehicles. Challenge their own ability to handle the mighty beasts they drove around in the rocky hillsides.
The river bottoms with the washed out trails, making their way through the lands. The little jeep engines being tested for the power to get them to a top of boulders that time has polished smooth and clean.
The time is now
Fast-forward to this weekend. There is a sign advertising the 2017 Jeep Rally.
I am not real sure what all is involved with this event, but I do know there will soon be about 100 or so jeeps parked in that the open area that the county owns. Just need a moment here. We do not call it a parking lot. Instead, this is referred to as “the parking area.” All this will happen just across the street.
It is 7 AM on Friday
They will begin to gather, drivers and whoever he/she has brought along, usually guys driving with wives and girlfriends. And maybe another couple or kids. There are even some fellow retirees here and there among the milling crowd.
They hurry in the community center at the edge of the open area where apparently breakfast awaits with that important stuff- coffee.
Then after a bit, they will come back out and 150 or so drivers and company will be back out gathering around the jeeps laughing and visiting.
Then about 8:45 they all mount their vehicles and leave out in batches of 8 -10 headed to a ranch back to the west.
Just to set the record straight
Now, I only have the account of past years from the local paper to go on from here. I pride myself on watching and learning. When you watch people you learn lots of lessons.
Usually, I report to you about what I can back up with research. So the how the day is spent? For these people who are so interested in driving their jeeps in such rough country? That they will come from all over the state and be here 3 nights, to have 2 days to be out there 8-9 hours each day?
The few facts I do know
I do not know how they spend the day. A granddaughter tells of their neighbors over where they live, south of Austin who has a friend who comes over and participates each year. She described it as a climbing event. I don’t know, of course, but sounds possible.
There is the Ink’s Ranch. Is this raw rough country what the drivers want? To allow those drivers to test their skills?
Is it possible
Do these jeeps give the feeling of the covered wagons and being horse back in this day and age? Is this part of the magnetism of such a sport? If this is part of it, there is finally some bit of a glimmer in my mind of why the event seems to keep appealing to people. This may explain some need to keep a sport like this alive.
They will all began to show up this afternoon between 5 and 6 dusty and tired. Streaming back into the parking area. Some windows will be all but covered in dirt. Drivers themselves will be tired from the days’ events. They will again gather and go in for a meal and meeting.
Stories of what did happen or almost happened.
Folks, they do this 2 full days.
I wonder what some of the items they have their jeeps all decked out with are. Probably would not know why you would have it if I knew what it was.
Remember, I am a female.
Women don’t usually know about jeep stuff. Secondly, I would probably think it wasn’t safe. You know someone has to pay attention to those things. According to the local newspaper that comes out 1 time a
According to the local newspaper, a weekly, arriving in the mailbox on Wednesdays, there is a meal, and some awards Saturday night.
However, one can’t but wonder about the personal efforts these people put forth. What battle to achieve the awards? Were they able to complete and achieve the feats they had planned?
Maybe they were able to do something they were afraid to try? Did they dream of just being able to participate? Each vehicle came bravely to town. Each driver worked all week to be able to have Friday off from work.
The personal stories of each of these who came and took part in this event. Each one has a story to tell. Will they learn to tell it? Or will they find themselves retired, scratching their heads and wondering about their misspent youth?
Will their stories be told?
Will their kids ever know what daredevils they are blessed with for parents?
Just maybe that pioneer spirit still lives in their hearts and souls. The “wild west” has certainly changed. There are rodeos for those who want to have a taste of the “way it was.” Maybe a jeep rally is this spirit being feed. Keeping it strong.
How will you pass your story on
Have you started recording some of these stories for yourself? Or is there room for these stories among the financial paperwork in your files?
The way we record our history for those to come is changing. Digital this and that. When sharing a picture, handing someone your phone.
There was a time when one saved “photo albums.” I treasure several from my folks past. I have not done as well with albums. Hopefully that fact will be corrected. Have you?
How will you have your grandkids remember you?
If you are having a really boring day now that you are retired. Why not dig out a picture from that place where you have that stuff. Get a sheet of paper and in your own handwriting, or on the computer jot down your memories.
Do you have a picture of your graduation from high school? What did you think about when you accepted your diploma? What were your dreams?
Did you have a jeep rally in your past? It may not seem important now, but it will as time passes. Put the description or whatever the story the photo told, together in an envelope and start your own memory bank.
So many people are hesitant to actually admit the bit of pride felt when those special events occurred. How they actually felt.
What a gift to leave.
Some actual record of how you thought and felt at an earlier time in your life. You may think that no one is interested in your memories? Could be you are right. But, what if you are wrong?
You say you don’t like your memories? Here is the perfect time to rewrite history. Help yourself have a happier retirement life.
Now is the time
Allow yourself to rewrite the memories as you would have liked them to be. You did not always win every event you entered?
Talk about the actual event in your history when you write it down. Did you actually give 100% effort and still did not win? Write it down. Record the memory.
Add the part that could have had you as a winner. Prepared more? Trained harder? Whatever your personal battle was.
Choose a photo you have a good memory about. Talk about how you felt. What was important to you that day. About where it was taken. Who else was there? See it in your mind.
For this photo, in particular, leave a written account for that one who travels this route someday in the future. Help them with your account of what happened. They can learn from you.
Now let’s talk about your retirement life. Is it everything you had hoped for? Are you as happy as you wanted to be?
Take out a sheet of paper and grab a pen. If there are some parts you would like to change about your retirement years, now is the time to do it.
Now is the time to decide what you would like to change. Write down some of those ideas. Some of those dreams. It is now time to start recording a happier retirement. Do you know how to plan your day after retirement?
You do have to take the bull by the horns you know. There is no automatically happy retirement. You make it yours. Make the plan. Decide to make the small changes to make things better.
This time get it going in a better direction. Make the decision to make things better.
A big step if that is what you need, or if there are just some small things about your days in retirement you are not happy with, maybe some small steps.
Just get started.
Tell your story about your “jeep rally.”