Generally, retirement happens between 55 and 70 years of age and is associated with taking on the mantle of a senior citizen. Before this time you should be endowed with surplus drive and under-utilised ambition. This article is aimed at that, still travelling group, who need to find an alternative to sport as their career choice.

Early retirement is, generally, associated with three groups of people:

  • Those who have “made it” and have no need to continue working;
  • Those following a calling or vocation who deliberately choose to follow this unusual path; 
  • Those whose age has superceded their talent and face superior competition, normally in the sporting arena; and
  • Those looking for a change in life

I hope these three groups sit up and take note – you are simply retiring from one profession and moving on with your life,  that is all and is not unusual.  In the last century, the norm was for a person to join a company, work for 40-ish years and then retire. The global impact of the World Wars, telecommunications and the aeroplane (easier travel) have forced change to this situation by opening a whole range of different “doors” in life and people realised that there were many other options calling them in life.

This new situation introduced the “job hoppers” and “head hunters” to industry and, by the end of the 20thCentury, the normal person changed their job approximately every 7.3 years, or 6 times during their working life. Advancement through wider experience and influence became more fundamental in business, the “steady” employee became redundant and under-appreciated.

To the first group mentioned above, my message is “Don’t stop using your talents, simply change your audience. You remain of great value to your society and there are others who need you for their own growth and development. With the financial security you have already realised, you can now set about “scratching your other itches” which we all have.

To the second category of person, the blessing of a calling or vocation is that you have clarity of purpose. It is given to very few of us and is often ignored in the beginning. My message to you is “Go with the flow of your internal demand and, to steal the Nissan Advert, always remember that “Life is a journey, enjoy the ride!” In the medium to long term you will realise more joy, satisfaction and happiness by following your heart. 

To the sporting fraternity, the only sporting discipline that offers lifelong earning potential is golf. Almost all the others offer a limited, but most fruitful, career. If you are wise, during that career, you will be able to prepare for a full post-sport life and, when the time arrives, set out into that life with a handy financial nest egg available to “quick start” you on that journey. 

To those who look for change I urge you to hold tight to the positives and grow your way to further success.  Whenever a door closes, somewhere a window opens, all you have to do is find it and take advantage of it.

Have fun and keep on keeping on, each setback is only a stepping stone to success.