top of page

Part 1 - Introducing Your Retirement Vehicle

Updated: Oct 19, 2023

Like it or Not....This is What You Get

The Real question is: Can You Change a Tire on the Road? Can You Re....Tire?

This drawing is of course, just a conceptualization of the retirement journey. However, the word retirement is, in itself, terribly confusing to most people I know who are contemplating it. Therefore, 'retirement journey' can become an even bigger puzzle. It takes some tools to solve it that you may not have in abundance.

Retire is a word that dates back to the 16th century and then meant "withdraw from battle". Fast forward to the 1930's. Social scientists borrowed it somewhere back around the time Social Security was "invented" in Germany. We had about 15-20 workers for every person who would receive benefits. Money was about the only issue in life - would there be enough to stay out of debtors prison after a lifetime of hard work? Life expectancy for seniors was short.

Then, WWII came along and the unprecedented prosperity of the next 60 years following it.. GDP went up year after year. Life expectancy also rose and expectations with it. You know the story - so now most people can say they just want to quit work and take a "trip" to get away. Maybe just a short road trip. It could be a trip overseas for a year or more. It could just be a rejuvenating vacation nearby. If not a trip, then abundant leisure at home. In any case there is both and internal and an external change.

As the post war years unfolded, those who were too sick to take advantage of this social prosperity were taken care of by families or "nursing homes". They "withdrew" in the original meaning of the word. Many would say they became invisible. May it never be so for you. (That is one central purpose of this blog - encouragement to avoid withdrawal).

At present, I'm assuming that you are now over age 50 and are exceptionally grateful that you can look forward to a long life well lived. It should be easy... right? You have survived and thrived, and it should continue for as long as it has taken to get this far up the mountain. Maybe another 30-40 years. And we can deal with problems as they come up, so why worry?

I Hope You are Right!

However, the best way to design the future is to plan for it with the right expectations around the risks involved. The drawing is a way to look at your life every year and reflect on how to make next year even better.

Look at the drawing for a moment and imagine that the two tires on the back of the car are RELATIONSHIPS AND HEALTH. The two front ones are: TIME CONTROL AND RESOURCES.

You steer with the front, and without the back ones there's not much to get you moving or have momentum.

You will be going down the road sometime, following your 'MAP' and one (or more) of the tires will have a puncture. You will hit a pothole and you will have to change the tire to stay on the journey. I call this "Re---Tire". It means you have the resilience to change whatever is in that area of dysfunction. You may be able to get help. There are many who will do that - for a price. Kind of like a tow truck. Perhaps some friends will assist - or you unload the coaching spare tire so you can find the solution quicker.

Some of the changes will be visible and others less so. Changing yourself is key. But you will have to RE...Tire, whatever that means to you and your passengers.

Otherwise,.... you will have a less pleasant journey.

What Can I Do About This?

Here is a good way - there are many ways, but I like this one the best. Think about the car before you began the journey. You had to pack for the trip and you can't take everything. You separate and leave some things behind because you know there will be a better way to do it along the way. You just don't know where. Nonetheless, you pack your bags with the important stuff, knowing you will be unpacking and repacking at various stops.

It's a very inexpensive book but full of wisdom. The author is Richard Leider, and if you look through his Amazon Site you will find many of his books that can help with your retirement journey. Another one I like in particular is Life Reimagined. It was a joint project with AARP that Richard has refined and made a bit better in my opinion.

There are many other authors on NON financial retirement coaching, but Richard is one of the best places to begin. (I get no kickback).

Have fun with books and decide which ones you want to take with you on the journey. Could all be digital these days.

Lastly, put me in your back seat. Call for a bunch of free stuff to get your vehicle outfitted for the rough spots. It can look much more capable and rugged than my poor sedan drawn with help from a granddaughter. You can draw your own and make it whatever you want!

Just do it!

Happy Days Ahead

Joe Grant, MBA

Certified Retirement Coach

Contact me for a Free 45 minute Consultation at

12 views0 comments


bottom of page