Time Management in Retirement

Managing time in retirement is different. When you are at work life seems to be compartmentalised into three different areas. The working day, weekday evenings and weekends. I don’t know about you but we were usually too exhausted after our long commutes to do much on weekday evenings ( I think exhaustion took over when getting child care ceased to be a consideration) so that just left weekends to plan and most weekends we were looking at one activity plus a chill out day.

All this has completely changed. First off we have to identify the day of the week, more of a challenge when your life is not so much routine based . We did think at one point we should have a vote each morning on what day it was but regretfully dismissed this as a tad impractical! Then we have to choose what to do. The possibilities are endless, see the new exhibition at the museum, take a drive into the country, attend a drop in Yoga class, see friends. How to decide? I am, of course, so grateful that we are lucky enough to have all these opportunities and to be able to take advantage of them. In the first heady days of retirement we were like kids in a sweet shop, amazed at all the goodies on offer and wanting to grab it all. Unbelieving that there were so many rich possibilities.

A year on we have calmed down a bit. We now have some regular commitments, (yoga and dance classes for me) which make it easier to know which day of the week it is. Because of this weekends have turned back into weekends, which we are finding helpful. We have also tried to stop doing or booking things just because we can – we got to the stage a one point this year where we were thinking oh no! we have to go to the theatre again tonight as if it were a chore rather than a treat. This was a bit of a turning point and we started to set some guidelines about what we would book and what we wouldn’t. All this activity was also compounded by the need to get to know people in our new neighbourhood and feeling that we shouldn’t turn down any opportunity to meet new people.

Overall I feel we are beginning to get there, we are managing to carve out a bit more space for our individual creative projects as well as do things outside of the house both together and separately. After all it has turned out like most things, to be about maintaining balance. I’d love to hear your stories about time management in retirement – do share any good tips you have

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