July 2, 2015

A Satisfying Journey: What a Satisfying Retirement Becomes

If you have been one of regular readers of the blog, Satisfying Retirement, you know I decided to stop writing in April. After almost five years I felt as though that well had run dry. I had written about every part of retirement from all sorts of perspectives and directions. 

Readership was at an all time high, comments were insightful and without the abrasive nature of too much of the blogging world today. With 10,000 Baby Boomers retiring every day for the next 14 years there certainly was an audience. My book continues to sell on Amazon and the requests for interviews, book reviews, and guest posts were steady.

Even so, I felt there was little more I could bring to the table on the subject of retirement as a full time topic. Coupled with an emotional and change-filled first 4 months of 2015, the time just felt right to stop.

However, a writer must write. I get a creative high from putting thoughts on paper (or computer screen). I enjoyed the family-like atmosphere that regular readers created for all of us who spent some time at that web address. I made some life-long friends from those interactions that took contact from the virtual world to the real one. 

So, after nearly two months of not thinking about blogging at all, I began to feel a stirring, an awakening that made me wonder what else I might find interesting enough to write about and worthwhile enough for others to read, without dealing with the familiar ground of retirement.

A Satisfying Journey is the result. 

During the last 18 months of Satisfying Retirement I gave myself permission to write more about lifestyle and family issues, health and finances, travel and learning from a perspective that didn't have to tie everything to not working.

If 14 years of retirement taught me one lesson, it is that this time of life can be fulfilling, creative, and energizing, while also being scary, confusing, and unpredictable. In short, it is like any time in one's life. Retirement is just a label. On its own it doesn't clarify or describe anything. It is up to us who have been limited by that word to show the world (and ourselves) that the only limits are the ones we accept.

A Satisfying Journey is going to be about a time of life that can be filled with purpose and joy. Will the word retirement ever be used? Sure. Is this going to be nothing but a rose-colored glasses look at a world that seems to be bouncing from crisis to crisis? Hardly. 

What I would like it to be is a voice of reason, of hope and enthusiasm, a call to rise above the negative, a take on life that says no matter what limitations health, finances, a difficult family situation, or the current political state we find ourselves, each life has the potential for fulfillment and joy that only needs encouragement and support to realize.

I am going to write about my own life and how it is unfolding since my retirement ( see, there it is!) in 2001. I may report on how others have taken something difficult in their life and made it a positive force. I will write about my failures, frustrations, and problems and how I plan to overcome them. I will write about the good times, the day-to-day of a life that tries to make the most of opportunity and options.

Occasionally, I may comment on something political or social in the news, but hopefully not in a way that inflames a difficult situation or upsets anyone. There are certainly plenty of web sites, blogs, and TV channels that do that already. Respect and civility will be the goals.

Blogging about retirement was fun and educational for me. But, it became too restrictive during a time of life when so many of our limits have been removed. 

Please join me as I explore my Satisfying Journey. 

To keep things simple and allow new readers to take a look at older posts in the archives that deal with retirement, I will be staying at the same web address, at least for now. If I do move, I will provide an easy-to-follow link.


And, yes, it feels good to be back at the keyboard.


56 comments:

  1. Bob, I've missed your blogs and all the comments from your readers! Writing about our journey sounds like a great idea. Looking forward to it! Hope you, Betty and your family are all doing well.

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    1. Thanks, Pam. Yes, the family is doing well. There will be plenty of updates on them in upcoming posts.

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  2. GREAT to have you back writing Bob. I don't often comment but I've come to see you as a friend I've never met:-), looking forward to this next chapter with enthusiasm.

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    1. It feels good to be back. I needed the break to think about what I really wanted to do. Frankly, for the first 30-45 days I didn't miss blogging at all. But, something started gnawing at me a few weeks ago that turned out to be this.

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  3. I'm looking forward to your new blog. I've stopped my blog a few times over the 5 year lifespan but have always come back. Friendships are made, information is shared but it's always good to have a blog vacation.

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    1. A blogcation is like a staycation...a necessary time of freshening and reflection, but without straying too far from home..

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  4. Glad to see you back here. This journey needs narrators with real life experiences

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    1. Thanks, MaryAnn. The journey also needs all sorts of input and feedback from readers to live up to its full potential.

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  5. Welcome back to the blogoshpere, Bob. I for one look forward to your new insights, perspectives and reasoned observations about our "journey."

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    1. Thanks, Tom. Unlike an RV trip, this journey has no reliable map. We will wander around together.

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  6. It was a pleasant surprise to see A Satisfying Retirement pop up in my reader this morning. Welcome back! I look forward to many interesting and thought-provoking posts from the new Satisfying Journey.

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    1. I woke up to something I haven't had in over two months...a full mailbox of comments!

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  7. Welcome back,Bob! I'll look forward to your thoughts.Ken and I had a busy year and a half..and had to make some changes in our original plans.I did not deal well with the climate up North. The social isolation got to me,too.We took our Gilbert house back and we're now back to living in the Valley and going up and down to the woods for breaks.. a grand experiment! We both went back to work part time too! Will check in weekly and see what's up on your Journey.

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    1. Well, that is interesting. Our new home is on the Chandler/Gilbert line, so now we have no excuse for not getting together. Drop me an email (satisfyingjourney@gmail.com) with your particulars and we will hook up at some point soon.

      I might want to write a post about what prompted your changed heart and your decision to come back to the Valley. My next post is about plans being meant to change....you seem to fit that perfectly!

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  8. Bob - Welcome back to blogging! I have missed reading your posts and enjoying the discussions among your readers. Am glad though that your time off gave you a chance to recharge your writing engine. Now onto the journey.

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    1. Thanks, and a belated happy birthday, Mike. Betty and I look forward to seeing you and Tamara in Portland in 6 weeks.

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  9. Great to have you back, for as often or not as you want! Great new focus too. I look forward to hearing from you.

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    1. I haven't decided yet on a posting schedule...probably every 4-5 days. We will see.

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  10. I appreciate that you see the many stages in our lives. I am looking forward to reading your stories welcome back!

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    1. You have a major change going on in your life, too. No more Kansas - hello Delaware, That will give you plenty to write about and react to.

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  11. I was happy to see you when I looked at my inbox today! I had wondered if you would be back when you had some time off to regroup and would once again desire to use your writing skills to put down your thoughts. You have such good insights to life and we all enjoy hearing about those. Perhaps you can write as you feel the mood to express things in your heart so that blog posts don't feel like a job but just a way to connect with others who, for the most part, can identify with what you are saying. Glad you are back! Diane

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    1. Thank so much, Diane. I do feel newly energized.

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  12. Welcome home! You have been missed.

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  13. I knew you'd be back! So nice to see you here again. I totally understand the need for a broader range of topics and changing it to 'Journey' is brilliant. Things are great here in Cape May and we love it here. I have a p/t gig writing for the local paper. It's very right wing, so it's challenging for me (lol). Hope everyone is well and happy in your new home!
    b

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    1. Betty constantly calls me over to her computer to see something you have put on your Facebook page! I'm glad you and Dave are happy in your new home.

      We are also very pleased with our new home, neighborhood, and the sense of freshness the move has given us.

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    2. It's kind of like a new lease on life! If we hadn't made the move we'd never have known how perfect this place is for us. No risk, no gain. I hope you love your new digs as much as we do!
      b

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  14. So happy that you are going to continue with the journey.I have gained so many insights from reading your past blogs.I think life is a journey and there are so many phases to it. It will be interesting to see what you write about and thank you for taking the time to write again. A long time fan. p.s. this is the first time I have ever bothered to reply to something, I think that means that you are a very accomplished blogger.

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    1. I have copied your very nice note from the email you sent to me. Thanks for your thoughts and comment! Let's take this life journey together.

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  15. Welcome back Bob! I have been periodically checking back, and noticed about a week ago there were some changes; so this gave me hope that you were getting ready to jump back in the water :-) I look forward to reading your posts on a regular basis. You have always been such an inspiration to me and your many readers.

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    1. Very observant..yes, I did change a few things to see if I liked the look. It will probably continue to evolve a bit, but I felt the need for a change.

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  16. Yea! Welcome back, Bob! I always check for a new post and thought you might be returning when I noticed some color changes and some new info on your sidebar. I'm so glad you're returning and I look forward to the new focus and direction.

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    1. Thanks, Glenda. I have all sorts of topics I want to write about.

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  17. Welcome back! We missed you. I'm excited to join you on your journey and I'm looking forward to your always thoughtful insights.

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    1. It is good to be back. I guess I am a little surprised that people were still checking over the last few months to see what I was doing, but I am pleased you did.

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  18. What a great transformation of your blog! Welcome back! (And my apologies if this comment comes up multiple times; I'm having trouble getting past "preview.") -Jean

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    1. Your kind thoughts only appeared one time, so no problems. And, thanks for the welcome back.

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  19. welcome back...missed reading as well. ronaldj

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  20. I missed saying farewell to your final retirement blog post and by the time I got to it you had closed the comments. I was late getting to it as I retired from work that same week - one of those coincidences where we both decided to "retire" at the same time. Then today (July 3rd) I thought to myself It's been a while since Bob Lowry stopped blogging, I wonder if after a break he's had a change of heart and started up again, I should check - and there you were. Welcome back Bob and I look forward to your future posts. - David

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    1. Is that a good example of serendipitous behavior?

      I trust your retirement is going well. Drop me an email if you wish with some thoughts and feedback on the first two months.

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    1. Hooray to you, too, for coming back!

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  22. Really missed you. Yours is one of the very best "over 60" blogs. Welcome back!!!

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  23. Welcome back Bob. I like all the other missed you during your hiatus. Mine ended a little sooner than your's did and I too took a different path. Theodore Roosevelt had many comments about always writing. It is in our blood and we just can't not do it.

    I look forward to you new topics.

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    1. Thanks, RJ. I will take a look at your new blog.

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  24. Wow! What a happy surprise to see you're back. And for good!
    Jeff

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    1. Hi, Jeff. Glad you came back to see what I was up to. For Good? No promises, but it feels right to be writing again.

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  25. Just realised that you are back - great news and I've put a link to your blog from mine, so you can't go away again!!

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    1. Hi, Caree. Yes, I felt the old tug to write, but not restrict myself to topics that were purely retirement-oriented. Glad you checked!

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  26. Happened back here by accident. Happy that you are back writing. I'm not retired and not close to retirement, but I enjoy reading. Thanks for sharing!

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