Retirement Tips To Make Your ’14’ Awesome





“Too many of us are not living our dreams because we are living our fears”


~Les Brown, Motivational Speaker~


Attention: Baby Boomers, Empty Nesters, Retirees, or Millennial Planners!  How about a reality check?


If you retire at 65, and live to the average life expectancy of 79, you have roughly 14 years to enjoy your retirement.  Most of you probably have shoes older than that.


adapted from a motivational speech by Unkle Adams.

So here’s my number one tip for making your 14 awesome—go for 20 instead!


Stop worrying about money, fearing death, whether your brain will be able to do Sudoku puzzles or not, and everything in between?   Fear and worry is a HUGE waste of time and you don’t have much time to waste.

I am not trying to be morbid. My point is, don’t put off living the retirement life you always dreamed of because you are afraid.  Remember that dream? The one you talked about every single morning of your 30+career. Now is the time!   #retirementisforthefearless

Let me share with you some advice and lessons that we learned for #livingour20!


I subscribe to the theory that living under a rock when it comes to news is a better way to live.  Mike on the other hand believes the exact opposite.  I figure he’ll let me know when something important happens.

BUT–If you are one of those that does read the news or listens to the ‘Negative Nancys’, then you know there are studies out there that say if you retire early you will die sooner.   Those studies are usually very flawed, many of those early retirees are probably unhealthy anyway, hence the need to retire.  If fact, if you really want to look, there are plenty of studies that say the exact opposite, which is why we retired.

Screenshot 2017-07-16 13.40.40

Bottom line:  Listen to the  ‘POSITIVE POLLY’S’ and kick the ‘NEGATIVE NANCY’S’ to the curb.  Don’t waste your 20 on them.


Remember my mantra.   Retirement is for the fearless, not the fearful.  That means stepping out of your comfort zone and feeling confident in your abilities to provide for yourself monetarily, mentally and physically.  Don’t let anyone or anything hold you back.  Be selfish, this is all about you now.


In the last 6 months, we have been to the Highlands of Scotland, the Louvre in Paris, the Glaciers of Alaska and in a few days to Big Ben in London.   Soon we will have 5 weeks in Eastern Europe and just booked Italy in January.  This is all from a person that wouldn’t fly a few years ago.


Let’s face it, if you don’t have a reason to get up in the morning, you won’t.  So once the job is gone, just create another.

Screenshot 2017-07-16 14.49.16
excerpt taken from News Scientist January 25, 2017.  Full article here.

Mike and I plan out at least one thing daily whether it’s going to spinning class, returning an item to Target, or flying to Scotland there is always something on our calendar!  In fact, lately there seems to be 10 things on our calendar everyday.  We can’t figure out why we have less time now than before.  Frankly, I think it’s a good problem to have.


This concept is so ridiculously simple that it’s almost unbelievable.  Do you know how expensive it is to be sick and how cheap it is to be well?  Actually, I can answer that being a medical professional–it’s expensive.

Don’t waste your retirement money on illness and your 20 on being sick.  Take care of your body!  No more excuses–like “I work all day” or “I have no time to see the doctor”.   Now you have plenty of time— so get tuned up!

  • Get your colonoscopy –colon cancer is preventable
  • Go to the dentist- people with better teeth are in better health
  • Get your lady ‘parts’ and man ‘parts’ checked–those diseases are also preventable!
  • Check your blood pressure–treat it and you could prevent a stroke
  • Check your cholesterol and blood work
  • Get your vaccines–like pneumovax (prevents pneumonia), etc.

I could go on and on.  But you get my drift.  We need to keep our ‘temples’ in tip top shape, especially if we are going to climb Mount Kilimanjaro!


I hear so many people say they want to retire–but put it off thinking a few more years of work will make a huge difference in their life style.  My theory is, when your 20, changes into your 13, then your 12, and then your 5–then what’s the point.  Isn’t that why we earned it and put it away in the first place?

I am not saying go take it all and buy a lear jet.   What I am saying is that if it keeps you from going to Bali to do some “Eat, Pray, Love” thing–something you have dreamed about forever–then I say go for it.   Experiences are priceless and you will make it work!


Centenarians or people that live to 100 years old–have intact brains.  Why?  Again so many theories but the one I think makes the most sense is the BLUE ZONES.  Basically there are 5 regions in the WORLD where there is the highest proportion of people who reach 100 years of age.   Read about it–it’s fascinating!

Aside from that here are other ways:

  1. Learn a new skill–if you follow my INSTAGRAM account, then you know I am trying to learn Adobe Lightroom and it’s kicking my butt! But talk about stretching my brain….like a rubber band ready to break.
  2. Visit a country where they don’t speak English- that will make your head spin in a good way. 
  3. Use social media- contrary to popular belief, I think social media for the ‘older crowd’ is a GOOD THING!  It keeps you engaged, social, and it’s hard to use.  You are basically learning a new skill.
  4. Indoor Cycle or Spin- Oh my gosh, I could do a whole blog post on the benefits of spinning for the Over 50 crowd.  It’s low impact, safe-no traffic, all weather, keeps you social just to name a few.  Not to mention the benefits to your overall cardiovascular health.  Half my spinning class is over 50.
  5. Invest in your family– in third world countries– families take care of their elderly because their elderly took care of them.  It surprises us here in the US, but over there they wonder why we are surprised.  Love, nurture and stay close to your family and friends–a strong support system leads to a longer, happier life.  And who knows you may need them to take care of you someday! (Are you listening Donovan, Brandon and Gabriella? )

I could go on and on.  Instead–tell me how you are living your 20!  Go over to my instagram SarjeantsOnFire and hashtag me #forget14gofor20!  Show me your pics, I would love to see them!!!!!!!

Take care everyone!



10 comments on “Retirement Tips To Make Your ’14’ Awesome”

  1. Love the article..well said. Glad I have a BFF who helps me learn new things😊Here’s one for ya.. FEAR- False Evidence Appearing Real! My thoughts always go to Philippians 4:6-7 ( look it up and read it) 😘


  2. Donna I have really enjoyed reading you blogs and the adventures of travels you have shared. Why wait for to travel, tomorrow is not promised. Although we have only traveled back and fort to the Philippines, and Alaska, hoping next year it will be Japan. My husbands daughter who’s in the Navy will be stationed in Japan. Enjoy your travels and be safe and always looking to hearing your next destination. Until then take care always…..


  3. Fantastic advice! I particularly like the ‘brain’ section – learning another language does it for me, but all your suggestions are great. I don’t know how many times I’ve heard ‘I’d love to do what you’re doing, but …’ – I say you just have to decide that’s what you’re going to do!


  4. Being a recently turned 60 year old, I totally agree with all of what you’ve so eloquently written. I too write about making the most of your life into your 50s, 60s, 70s and beyond. In fact I have written a few articles about retirement and keeping yourself healthy, wealthy and wise. You have reinforced everything I believe and I truly hope to get at least 20 more years of a good life. #TeamLovinLife


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