199: Repotting & Retirement, with Jim Eager

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I’m looking forward to listening to this podcast! I just heard Riley Moynes (The Four Phases of Retirement) speak at a conference last week and I’m currently reading his book.

I’m glad you got to hear Riley Moynes. He’s an entertaining and informative speaker. The great thing about his TED talk is that it’s only 13 minutes long, which makes it much more accessible to people who don’t enjoy long videos. He’s doing great work to help those approaching and in retirement. :slightly_smiling_face:

I hope you enjoy the episode.

He was a very good speaker. And I’m looking forward to hearing your discussion of the four phases.

As someone who’s set a date (no later than June 27, 2025) for when I will at least retire from the job I presently hold, this was a remarkably valuable episode. Thanks much to David, Mike, and Jim for their thoughtful conversation and links. I started with David’s Productivity Field Guide about 2 months ago (and haven’t made as much progress as I would like) as part of my process for deciding what comes after leaving this particular job and role. From the discussion, Jim might particularly appreciate that I am approaching this as a process where I’m seeking to discern where I am next Called.

I do appreciate the bit about how much people identify themselves with their professional roles, particularly for men. On December 7, 1999 at 9:10 in the morning, I was informed by my then employer that my services were no longer required and I was part of the first mass downsizing in that employer’s history (though, sadly, not the last). I’d at least had a heads-up that this was coming and could prepare. But that was a hard lesson about how I am not my job. I do value what I do today, as someone who is part NASA’s mission to Planet Earth. But I’m not my job.

A related thought, looking towards this next phase for me, came from Monica Reinagel’s interview with Oliver Burkeman on the Change Academy Podcast (“Looking for happiness in all the wrong places”, March 15, 2024) – at takeaway for me from that session was thinking more about optimizing my presence in where I am and less about optimizing my experiences. That podcast happened to be right after this episode of Focused in my queue.

Pointer to a beautiful essay on “Rediscovering Ikigai”, published today, by Anne-Laure Le Cunff at Ness Labs.
Among other points, it takes to task the common misconception that the famous Venn diagram is the true meaning of ikigai.


Thank you so much for posting this. :old_key:

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What an excellent reference, thank you for posting. The Venn Diagram approach never resonated with me, and I just didn’t see it in my understanding of what Ikigai was about. It seemed like someone else’s system laid on top of it and appropriating the name (which apparently it is).

The roles-based system I learned from David Sparks is very much in harmony with the author’s understanding of Ikigai.

It’s all about finding my purpose in living the roles that I have in life. Simple practices define that process. Living out those roles well improves my life and the lives of those affected by my roles and gives me a sense of service to others, accomplishment, and fulfillment.