10 Habits of Highly
Effective Baby Boomers: How to Make the Rest of Your
Life the Best of Your
As a Baby Boomer, you are probably thinking about your retirement.
Whether you plan to take early retirement (or you have already done
so), or you are planning for retirement from your current career at
age 65 or 70, you are probably actively planning for your financial
future. You should also be cultivating the 10 habits of highly
effective Baby Boomers to make the rest of your life the best of
your life. Mastering these ten habits will help you prepare for
retirement and enjoy it more when you decide to take that step.
1. Take 100% responsibility for your life. We all need to recognize
that we, alone, are responsible for our past, our present, and our
future. We need to take responsibility for the past and make peace
with it; live responsibly in the present; and recognize that no one
will plan our retirement for us. It is up to us to plan and prepare
for the kind of life we want to have after we “retire.”
2. Take your dreams off the back burner – put them on the front
burner. Most of us have found it necessary to put a dream or two on
the back burner because other things were more important or even
urgent at the time. Preparation for retirement offers the prime
opportunity to move those dreams to the front burner and start
planning and working to make them your retirement reality.
3. Nurture your relationships – remain connected. The day after
retirement, many people think their workplace relationships are
over; but this doesn’t need to be the case. If you have workplace
relationships you value, you should continue to nurture and enjoy
them. Ending a career doesn’t mean you have to become a hermit.
Remaining connected to the people who are important in your life
will bring great joy into your life after the big day.
4. Develop happiness habits. Make a conscious inventory of the
things that bring you happiness in life and make plans to continue
to do those things. Think about other things that would bring
happiness to your life after retirement and start developing habits
that will sustain those connections and activities. Make being happy
an intentional part of your retirement lifestyle.
5. Simplify and de-clutter. Retirement is the perfect time to shift
gears into a simpler, less cluttered and less stressful lifestyle.
Simplifying our lives both internally and externally is the perfect
activity for the immediate post-retirement days. While you’re at it,
get rid of the clutter inside and around you. I think you will find
the simpler and de-cluttered lifestyle very pleasing.
6. Enjoy the present moment NOW. It is easy to become overwhelmed by
responsibilities, goals and things we simply need to do. After all,
most of us have spent our lives preparing, planning and working for
the next thing or the next step, whether a raise, a promotion,
paying for college, etc. It is easy to become so focused on planning
and preparing for the future that we forget to enjoy today.
Retirement gives us the chance to stop and enjoy the present moment
in the NOW instead of partially enjoying it when we look back at old
photos. Retirement offers enjoyment and fulfillment in the present
moment if we will just grasp it.
7. Discover and cultivate your strengths. Retirement brings freedom
from supervisors and bosses telling you what they think your
weaknesses are and how you should work on fixing them. I have a
better idea: cultivate and play to your strengths. If a weakness
gets in the way, then just figure out how to work around it!
8. Leave a legacy – Make a difference. One thing that seems
consistent among Baby Boomers is the desire to leave behind a legacy
of making a difference in the world. There are thousands of ways to
do this. Just figure out how you can focus your interests and
strengths on making some kind of difference somewhere for others.
9. Let go of the past. Most unhappy retirees are living in the past
in their minds. They are reliving moments of joy or glory. They are
rethinking and getting mired in guilt or regret over mistakes or
missed opportunities. Recognize that the past is the past, including
your last job, and live in the present, making things to look back
on later in your life.
10. Renew your self physically, mentally and spiritually. The
happiest retirees I encounter are those who are physically fit,
mentally challenged and spiritually at peace.
All of the preceding nine habits will help you on your way to
If you are a Baby Boomer anticipating retirement and planning for
your exciting life after retirement, I encourage you to practice
these ten habits to enjoy a lifestyle that is fulfilling,
passionate, and joyous.
About the Author
Dr. Cynthia Barnett is a "refired" educator who has reinvented her
life, moving from the school house to an entrepreneurial venue. She
is a leading Retirement Lifestyle Specialist and retirement planning
coach. She is the author of "Stop Singing the Blues: 10 Powerful
Strategies for Hitting the High Notes in Your Life," and "Seven
Secrets of Highly Effective Retirees." She was recently interviewed
by Time magazine for their article on women in mid-life who have
reinvented themselves. For more information, visit
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