A one-sentence summary of what retirement is like

June 29, 2023

As our two Shelties (Duncan and Phoebe) pulled us around the neighbourhood the other day, we came upon a small group of younger folks — parents of school aged kids — enjoying a sunny late spring afternoon.

After some friendly chatting, talk turned to retirement. “You two are both retired now — what’s it like?”

After thinking a bit, our reply was this — “being retired is like every day is a Sunday.” It is not like every day is a vacation day — who could afford that — so it is more like the weekend, we explained. They liked that.

So Save with SPP decided to do a quick search for other peoples’ takes — ideally a short sentence — on what retirement is like.

We started by asking our new AI chat thingie what it thought retirement is like — in one sentence.

“Retirement is the time of life when one chooses to leave the workforce behind and live on savings, passive income, or benefits,” the AI doodad replied. OK, good, but we were thinking more of what it is like rather than what is literally is.

At the AAG website, a writer had a similar view to our own. When you are retired, the article notes, “now Fridays aren’t the best day of the week any more — they all are!”

A fairly recent article from Forbes didn’t boil it down to one sentence, but said these ten words are the ones most often used to describe retirement — “relax, happy, travel, retirement (of course), family, fun, success, freedom, money and fulfilled.”  This may not be an actual sentence but it captures a lot of what it’s like.

“Retirement is not the end of the road. It is the beginning of the open highway.” This two-sentence statement, original author unknown, was posted on the Southern Living website.

“We work all our lives so we can retire so we can do what we want with our time and the way we define or spend our time defines who we are and what we value,” states Bruce Linton. His quote is featured on the Goalcast website.

On the Goodreads website writer Charles Baxter describes retirement as being “gainfully unemployed; very proud of it too.” We like this one.

“Retirement is the best gift. No gold watch or plaque could ever top it,” state the folks at the Chapparal Winds Retirement Community website.

If there’s a common thread to all this, it’s that retirement means that your time is now yours, and it is up to you to decide what you’ll do with the time.

We saw that “money” was mentioned by Forbes magazine, and it’s true that money is part of it. The more you have when you retire, the more options you’ll have for your free time. So if you haven’t started saving for retirement — and maybe don’t have a pension or retirement savings plan through work — you ought to think about the Saskatchewan Pension Plan.

Any Canadian with registered retirement savings plan room can join. You can contribute as much as you want to each year (up to your personal RRSP room limit), and if you want to consolidate savings from other RRSPs into SPP, you can transfer any amount in. It’s how SPP makes your savings options limitless. Check out SPP today!

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Written by Martin Biefer

Martin Biefer is Senior Pension Writer at Avery & Kerr Communications in Nepean, Ontario. A veteran reporter, editor and pension communicator, he’s now a freelancer. Interests include golf, line dancing and classic rock, and playing guitar. Got a story idea? Let Martin know via LinkedIn.