Why ‘From Retirement to Refirement’?

The idea of a BLOG  on refirement vs retirement came to me one night as I was listening to yet another inspirational story from a fellow ‘boomer’ who with his wife was living their ideal Life Design. I reflected on all the client, friends, colleagues and acquaintances stories I had been privileged to share since I changed my own focus at the age of 47 years old.  I had attempted in the past to give some meaningful terminology to my own transition in 2001 and even briefly gave it a reference of ‘semi-retired’!!   Even typing that word ‘retired’ makes me cringe as I interpret the word with my legacy set of values around the definition and meaning of the word!  So as I listened to the story of my new acquaintance, he talked about his refirement and I was hooked!!

Suddenly, a light came on and I thought of how building a fire slowly but surely, first with newspaper, then kindling, an injection of two or three firelighters and finishing with some good dry logs was a perfect analogy for what I had done to achieve my Life Design . So what else could a ‘Life Design’ Coach do but provide an environment that supports other baby boomers to refire their energies, goals, life style, work style, values and (dare I say it!) passion!

When I started to look at what resources were available for the retirement conversation, they were and are mostly focused on 65+, whereas my experience has been more with 45 – 65yr age group.  So this BLOG is more about the 45 – 65 year olds who are not waiting until they are 65 years to change their focus, but are planning, designing and many living their refirement well before the ‘retirement’ age. Most of the clients I have seen in the last 11 years who were looking for a new direction for themselves in their career and their personal life were and are around the early fifties.  This is a good ten years earlier than the prescripted age of 65, so we are pioneers in refirement making it up as we go along!

As a baby boomer myself looking for an injection of refirement into my current career and previous owner of an IT company, I looked to embrace all that on-line technology that I had dabbled in over the last ten years!!   The fastest growing age group of on-line uses of Facebook and Twitter are 50+.   We are embracing the new technologies to keep up with our children and grandchildren and thereby still growing as a generation.   I am excited about sharing mine and others experiences of this ‘new generation’ and refireing of our lives as we look forward to the next thirty years!

Useful Definitions I have learned so far…

Refirement – usually associated with a reframing on the word retirement and has a direct link to the baby boomer generation. There are even books written about Refirement.

Baby Boomer generation – those born between 1946 – 1964.

Life Design©. – a life that is designed and planned by an individual or couples based on values, wants and needs.

BLOG – A blog was originally called a web log, as it is basically a log of interests or activities that an individual chose to post on the World Wide Web. Over time, as with most things, the term got shortened by picking up the last letter b in the word web, and tacking it on to the front of the word log, …



About Patti Gwynne

Patti Gwynne is an ICF Credentialed Leadership and Executive Coach based in Auckland.

Working your way through these processes takes courage! Be kind to yourself and feel free to contact Patti, if you would like a Coach to partner you on this journey.
(Patti offers a no obligation 30minute FREE phone coaching session to get you started).

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