What Would You Do If You Retired Early?


The idea of retiring early sounds great at first but what about when you start thinking about it more in depth? Maybe you will start to wonder about what on Earth you will do with all that free time.

Losing a set routine and suddenly being a person of leisure is something which might cause you some fear. Will you regret giving up work too early? The following are a few of the main points to consider when you think about whether or not to retire early.  

Do More Exercise

Some people worry about becoming fat and lazy when they stop working. After all, when you work for a living you need to move about to some degree, while retirement might involve a lot more time sitting about watching the TV or reading books. Well, in some surveys the majority of retirees report that they exercise more now than ever before. This is because they have discovered that this is an excellent time of life to go hiking, to start swimming or to keep fit in some other way. If you think about it this makes a lot of sense. If your work involves sitting about behind a desk for 8 or more hours a day then you probably don’t have all that much time for exercising. However, once you free up those 8 hours it begins to sound like a lot of time for doing something healthy.

Find a New Hobby

You might think your retirement years are going to be fun, fun, fun all the way. They might very well be but a significant amount of new retirees say that they get bored after a few months. Having all that spare time on your hands is only a good thing if you do something interesting with it. This is the perfect time to think of those new hobbies you have never had the time to carry out. Would you like to get your garden into shape, start painting, play golf or do something else you never had the time to do earlier? There are many fantastic hobby ideas for retired folk to choose from. What you need to bear in mind is that some of these cost money, can you afford to retire early and have the lifestyle that you want? Those regular golf and spa breaks don’t come cheap you know, not to mention a decent set of clubs for both yourself and your wife if she decides to take it up too. Even if you do manage to get a good deal on a set, it’s still a considerable one off expense. We then also have to take into account the yearly memberships at your local golf club as golf addiction inevitably sets in. This means that it is vital that you consider before you retire how much money you will need each month. If the hobby you are thinking of starting is expensive then you could find that retired life is more expensive than when you were working. After all, you don’t tend to spend all that money when you are at work, do you?

Travel More

Another big incentive for many people to retire early is the chance to travel more. Making do with a few miserly days of vacations every year for several decades is a kind of depressing situation. Maybe you have always wanted to spend months on a relaxing road trip or feel the call to explore Asia, Africa or some other far flung lands. This is a wonderful goal to aim for but it isn’t going to be cheap. Travelling is expensive at the best of times but if you plan to stay on the road for months on end it can be a massive drain on your resources. Ideally, you will have a plan which lets you earn money while you are travelling the world. For example, maybe you could rent out your property and bring in rental income every month you are away. Alternatively, it could be that you decide to take on a part time internet job to keep your finances ticking over while you live the best days of your life.

Do you have plans for what you will do once you retire?

14 Responses to What Would You Do If You Retired Early?

  1. moneystepper says:

    I would spend a year doing nothing and loving it.

    After that, I’d probably get bored and need to find a “job” of some sort… 🙂

  2. Debt BLAG says:

    For me, it wouldn’t be not working. There’s something about producing — even if I don’t make any money doing it — that I would need to do to feel like I’m contributing.

    And there’s certainly no shortage of things to do.

  3. Mark Ross says:

    For me, I’ll spend my free time traveling the world and if my family and my money allows it, I’m going to breed dogs and enter dog shows. It’s indeed expensive but I realy love dogs and I want to make one certain breed better.

  4. SavvyJames says:

    Golf, travel, volunteer, run, bike, lift, teach….There are any number of ways to stay active and engaged when retired. Definitely looking forward to retirement!

  5. kammi says:

    I would definitely keep doing what I’m doing and NEVER ‘retire’. I don’t know what I’d do if I had the chance to do ‘nothing’ (what does that even mean?) Life for me is too short to take a break-ever. I think that also the idea of ‘retirement’ is a constructed concept; I wonder if the people of ancient Egypt or Greece ‘retired’ after a lifetime of dedication to craftsmanship, etc. I don’t think we as human beings are ever stagnant or in stasis (I think that the Japanese understand this, as referenced through their artwork and architecture (landscaping, tea houses, etc), so you’re either evolving or you’re not. As for me,I must keep building and learning. I want to be the best I can be on every level of my potential, and that’s how I want to live my life.

    • Robert Bell says:

      You make some great points there Kammi. Some of us want to retire as early as possible and others can’t imagine ever wanting to retire. Isn’t that part of the fun of life?

  6. I would def. work out more and incorporate more travel- probably to central or south America.

    But I would also volunteer more as well. I’d probably end up doing that full time.

  7. I honestly don’t know what I’d do…right now I go absolutely NUTS being out of my work routine for more than 4 days. I call it “making my brain move.” I love being a software engineer, looking at and figuring out tough problems. So what would I do if I retired early? My question is…why would I want to? 🙂

    • Robert Bell says:

      Some people simply don’t want to give up work Brock and it is good if you can realise that this is the case before it is too late

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