Retirement is dead - long live full-time living

50 years ago, when people stopped working full-time, they tended to potter around the house for five years or so and then quietly shuffle off to whatever comes next. Today, life after full-time work looks totally different. People are just as likely to be travelling the world, starting a business or running a marathon as they are to be playing with their grandchildren (though they might do that too).

People stop full-time work for all sorts of reasons. They might reduce their hours to part time or choose to stop completely. They might need to care for a partner or close family member. They might have a period of ill-health. They might be unable to find a full-time job they want and so stop looking. Their children might leave home and they don’t have the same financial commitments anymore.

Whatever the reason they stop working full-time, for many people ‘retirement’ has become a dirty word. They don’t want to ‘retire’, like their parents and grandparents did before them. They’re fitter than previous generations and have much more energy. Many of them have big plans, dreams and ideas they want to realise. Others want to make the world a better place, in some small (or large) way. We want to help them.

That’s why we’ve called our business Full Time Lives. We want to help people replace their full time jobs with full-time lives - lives of their choosing, lived to the fullest. We also want to work with organisations that want to support their older employees or customers through this transition.

Since late 2016 we have interviewed over 100 people who are about to leave full-time work, have recently left or have fully transitioned to their lives afterwards. We’ve also talked to experts in gerontology, psychology, health and wellness, education, creativity, life coaching and purpose and read the latest academic research on what helps people live longer and happier lives after they transition from full-time paid work.

We came away from this research inspired by all the people we’d met and thrilled by their honesty and passion in sharing their stories with us. We also came away with five common themes, which seem to be integral to living a fulfilling and exciting life. We’ve called these the five key ingredients for a Full Time Life.

5 key ingredients.jpg

We are running events and workshops which are the first of their kind in Australia. We aim to help people build exciting, energising lives after full-time work. Lives which ultimately help them feel happier and more fulfilled and connected.

Find out more about the workshops and events we offer.

Find out more about each of the key ingredients to a Full Time Life.

What do we mean by a Full Time Life?

A life where you choose how you want to spend your time, without money as a primary motivator. A life where you feel energised and fulfilled and valued.

When can you get one?

Whenever you want! Many people start creating full-time lives for themselves after they transition from full-time paid work in their 50s and 60s.

Further reading

We’ve read a lot about purpose and fulfilment and happiness and longevity and retirement lately - and a whole lot of other stuff! Here are some of the things which have really shaped our thinking:

Blue zones of happiness.
Groundbreaking research into what makes people live longer and healthier lives. The so-called ‘blue zones’ are different areas around the world where people have very high life expectancies.

Harvard Study of Adult Development

A Harvard University study, running for nearly 80 years, brings academic rigour and insight into what makes people healthy and happy.

Top 5 regrets of the dying, Bonnie Ware.

Palliative care nurse Bonnie Ware shares some of the life lessons she learned while working for many years with the terminally ill.