As the post work era begins making choices that will lead to happiness is important. Because so much of the time during the work and career phase of life was programmed and scheduled, the freedom to hear the beat of a different drummer can be a challenge.
You are responsible for the choices you make. Each day brings the opportunity to decide that you will be happy and excited about the opportunities of the day that are available to you. So how do you find the happiness that you seek in your postworksavvy plan?
- Let’s begin with the realization that the new drummer is inside of you and you control the beat — you make the choice to begin the day with a negative mindset or you decide that you will choose to face the day with joy in your heart and a positive attitude . Despite the weather, or your partner’s mood, or the tasks that you face, approaching the day with a winning attitude is a choice that you control. Make starting each day with a positive attitude a rule for your postworksavvy.
- Think about how to ensure that your choices augment physical health in terms of fitness, nutrition and sleep. Postworksavvy is all about incorporating some form of exercise into the daily routine. This can include a power workout or simply a brisk walk around the block. Exercise tricks the body and energizes the mind. Eating right is another way to enhance physical health and with more time why not focus on increasing the fruit and veggie intake? But don’t make it too boring. Sleep is known as the great restorative and often a nap or an extra hour in the morning creates a better mood for the rest of the day.
- Do what you can to look your best. You don’t control the shape of your body nor the color of your skin but you can choose to present yourself in such a way that you smile as you pass a mirror and you invite compliments from those around you. Hanging out in worn out or unflattering clothes just because you aren’t going to appointments may be a temptation but you might end up feeling as worn out and tired as you look. You don’t have to dress beyond what is neat and flattering. Even if it is a bad hair day make the choice that you will present yourself as positively as the mood you choose. Hopefully you have reached your post work era of life with a strong sense of your own style and strong knowledge of what makes you feel good. By choosing to actively manage your physical presentation, you are also choosing to positively care for yourself.
- Chose to enjoy at least one or two hours of ‘me’ time. Although the rigid office schedule no longer controls your life, it is easy to get caught up in daily tasks that involve completing something or going somewhere. Making time to ‘goof off’ or simply ‘be’ in the moment takes you out of the time-orientation of daily life. Whether it is sitting outdoors and listening to the trees, or considering the existential nature of life, or taking some quiet time to admire a child at play — allowing time just to sit and to ‘be’ is important. It is this time that creates those islands of enjoyment during each day.
- Recognize and celebrate the gifts of the moment with a child-like sense of awe and gratitude. We have heard the platitudes that ‘life is short’ and that ‘life is precious’ both of which are commonly accepted in North American culture. One trick of making the most of life involves choosing to celebrate regularly every day. Learning a new skill, listening to a cat purr, enjoying a great cup of tea or a bit of conversation with your neighbor are examples of gifts of the moment, Choosing to recognize and celebrate the ordinary and the common place aspects of home, family and routine creates gratitude for the many gifts of each day and creates sustaining joy in living.
What choices will you make today to find joy, peace and love? Your own list of the choices to reap this reward might be quite different from the choices listed here, Recognizing how your choices influence attitude, behavior and perspective is an important step in filling your post work journey with joy, peace and love. Choose well!