The Two Word Retirement Mantra

If ever I’m asked about the best way to start creating a meaningful retirement, I offer this 2 word nugget: be intentional!

What? That’s it?  Yep, pretty much! ‘Be intentional’ has fast become my 2-word mantra!

Let’s face it, we all WANT a good retirement but wanting isn’t the same as having is it?  We need to actually DO something about it. And that’s where the ‘intentional’ bit comes in – because if ever there was a time to start getting intentional about what we want and how we want to spend our time and energy in the years ahead, this is it!

Not much of a strategy you may think, but actually, it’s one that works every time! Being intentional simply means proactively giving your attention to finding the answers to these key questions… and once you have the answers, the rest is comparatively easy.

Intention plus attention is a truly powerful combination

I’d say this is true for virtually anything you want to achieve – but never more so than when you’re transitioning into this exciting new chapter!

Of course, you can always ‘wing it’ and take a more passive approach in the hope that things will magically ‘sort themselves out’ into something meaningful, purposeful and enjoyable. But that’s a LOT to leave to chance, isn’t it?  

But I get it, I really DO – staring a big life transition in the face can feel challenging, scary, and overwhelming.

One quality decision

We’re all vulnerable to these feelings and many find it easier to default to a passive position…. otherwise known as procrastination! But procrastination isn’t exactly a whole heap of fun is it? It’s frustrating at best and totally incapacitating at worst – it’s always ‘there’ in the back of your mind, keeping you stuck… unable to move forward, unable to go back.

I recently read that we are all one quality decision away from anything we want. The important word here being ‘quality’.  It doesn’t mean passively wishing or dreaming that you’ll do it. It means actively deciding.

If we never make this decision, we will never do.

But by making the decision to ‘be intentional’ we bring a powerful force into play to help us create a retirement by design, instead of by default. 

Yes, it takes a degree of faith, commitment and courage but wonderful things happen once you make that decision:

  • You can finally focus your attention
  • You become the creator of possibilities
  • You can start to define your options and choices
  • You can start to shape the outcomes you want
  • You open yourself up to and attract opportunities
  • You turn your ideas into a commitment
  • You shift from ‘castles in the air’ to laying firm foundations
  • It closes the door marked “What?” and opens a new door marked “How?”
  • You can begin.

Owning the direction of your life

Being intentional is about taking charge of your life rather than letting circumstances rule you. Change can be hard but the biggest danger comes not from doing the wrong thing, but from doing nothing

Once you make a start, you’ll be amazed at how easily everything else falls into place.

As Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Once you make a decision, the world conspires to make it happen.”

Make an intentional start...

I know it can be tough to get started, which is why I encourage you to ease yourself in by taking the simple first step below. The Are You Retirement Ready? checklist is a great starting point.