What is better, Material wealth and “goodies” or the Freedom to do what you want?
Dr. John Kitchin appeared to have it all. He had a successful career as a neurologist, with a large beautiful home, a Ferrari in the garage, and esteem from his colleagues.
As he was entering his 30’s and starting this successful career, he noticed an older man choosing a variety of food in the cafeteria. He appeared to be energetic and in good health. Dr. Kitchen asked this gentleman what advice he would give to a young man starting out in a career who would like to reach a healthy old age just like him. The man said “Do what you want to do!”
Dr. Kitchin went on to build his successful career, but realized that he was doing the work that gave him more and more material goodies, but perhaps not daily joy and pleasure. He had the guts to leave his practice, consolidate his wealth, buy a studio apartment on the Pacific Coast Beach in California.
He now spends his days slowly rollarblading along the boardwalk, balancing and maneuvering from side to side to produce the optimal neurological benefits. (He was a neurologist, remember, so he knew what he was doing.) Most people seeing him would assume he was a beach bum, or perhaps had inherited wealth. but he is really a skilled professional man, doing what he wants to do.
For your retirement, What do you want to do? This is your chance. Challenge: Write down five to ten things that you want to do. Choose one to start. Don’t ask “When can you do it?” ask “How can you do it?”
(You can get more information about the documentary Slomo produced by Josh Izenberg at http://www.slomothemovie.com It was discussed in the March 31, 2014 Opinion Pages in the New York Times.