Finding Time

This is a guest post by Dave, who is also looking to retire no later than 45, but unlike Tim has no kids and doesn’t want any. Dave is from Ontario and is working towards his CGA certification.

Over two years ago, I wrote about my terrible procrastination habit .  At the time, I was just starting the more advanced period of my accounting education and was having a hard time finding the time in my seemingly busy schedule to get done all the homework I needed to get done.  I attempted many things in order to focus better – settling on a modified pomodoro technique which forced me to do so much homework per night and ensured I stayed up to date with my studying.  My wife noticed that my all-nighters decreased to almost none in the last couple of years of studying, while at the same time my hours of homework probably doubled.

Now that I’m done with school, I have found I need to re-focus on new goals rather than backsliding to my previous bad habits.  There are things I would like to do around the house that I have put off for the last 3 years, and there are hobbies I would like to get involved with which I never had time to do before.  I have found that a different method is needed because some of the projects will take full weekends to do, and needs more focused amounts of time.

I spent most of my free time in the summer getting ready for a Tough Mudder race – either working out in the evening or during my lunch breaks.  In order to focus myself, I’ve found that a list of things to do seems to work best for me – it allows me to prioritize the things that I want to do and keeps me moving away from “time-sucks” that sap my productivity.

There are times for me that sitting around and doing nothing is what I want to do, but usually, getting sucked into a TouTube/Reddit/Wikipedia wormhole for the afternoon doesn’t really make me feel all that useful.  I’d much rather have gone for a walk, fixed or built something around the house, attempted to learn something new, or read a book on my long list that I have created over the past few years.

My main goal with all of these different “projects” around the house is to stay busy, which (at the end of the day when I look at what I did) leads to a more fulfilling life for me.  Applying this to a post-retirement lifestyle, I don’t want to spend my days watching television or doing nothing – there are things I would like to do or learn when retired and “training” myself now to make better use of my time, rather than just waste it when I have more hours to use.

How do you see your retirement going?  Are you going to travel 100% of the time?  Learn something new?  Or how do you see yourself spending your time?

2 thoughts on “Finding Time”

  1. I think we see our retirement as a continuation and extension of the things we already love to do: traveling, wine tasting and activities like yoga and competitive sports. It’ll just be great when we have more time to devote to those things. 🙂

  2. I’m not thinking about retirement too closely yet, but I can definitely relate to needing to focus my time. Even having focused relaxation time is much better than getting sucked into that Internet worm hole as you put it. I agree, it just leaves you feeling sucked out and unaccomplished.

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