Yes, I’m “retiring” at the age of 33. After working nonstop since 2005 with a career that spanned real estate, telecommunications, retail, beauty and finance industries within the country’s top corporations, I am taking a halt to move with my husband in our new adventure at the Middle East.
Two months ago, I applied for an early retirement package from my present company, and was fortunately granted. My tenure is on a ticking clock now, and I’m preparing a true-to-form detailed business continuity checklist for my replacement’s on-boarding.
I have a few months to prepare for our move, travel with my husband, and finally settle into our new life. For now, I can’t hide the fact that I’m bursting with excitement for our transition.
Personally, I’m curious to see myself slow down. From an ambitious go-getter, I’ve evolved throughout my corporate life and have come to terms with how far I want to go, and how much I’m willing to sacrifice to get there.
As you can guess, I’m choosing to take a pause and re-calibrate my priorities. I have seen and experienced a lot in the 12 corporate years and I’m ready to take stock of it all. I’d like to now determine the path I’ll pursue once we live a new life in a new country.
At this point, I’m making declarations and a list of the top 11 things I’m MOST excited to do after my retirement takes effect:
- Get ridiculously fit. I plan to run, swim and do CrossFit almost every day! It’s also time to go back to more yoga and explore other fitness classes for fun and variety. Yes, the fitness junkie in me has always been half-jealous of people who have the freedom to work out whenever they please. You bet I’m going to fulfill this secret desire to work out for hours, while I can!
- Cook and bake a whole lot more. Husband and friends, watch out. I’m cooking up a storm and taking on bigger kitchen adventures. All the recipes which I deemed too ambitious, I now have time for you all. I will be shopping for ingredients from wet markets and taking my time to find the best organic and healthy buys for the kitchen creations I’m excited to make and serve.
- KonMari like I mean it! I want to crack the Marie Kondo’s life-changing magic of tidying up. I’ve been reading the book, and can never seem to be able to finish it these past months. I’m eager to find the time to “KonMari” our entire apartment, and find a lot of things to give away. Marie, I will make you proud.
- Volunteer. What better way to keep myself occupied than to help out the causes I believe in? Cory and I always feel guilty for not doing more than we should. And now, I have not an iota of an excuse.
- Finally read those books. There is a massive pile of books I spent a fortune on, and these books remain in pristine condition all over: by the bedside, on our library, by the kitchen shelf for cook books, etc. Well, these babies are getting a lot of loving from me soon.
- Teach. First love never dies. I’ve enjoyed teaching college students since 2009. I can now do more of it at least for one more trimester before traveling. I also miss coaching CrossFit kids and would love to see early childhood education’s day-to-day dynamics.
- Reconnect with loved ones. Something we easily neglect when we’re busy at work is truly reconnecting with family and friends. No, Facebook likes don’t cut it. Our transition is a true blessing. The imminent departure and change of address give us the chance to sit down, have coffee and share stories with friends and spend quality time with family.
- Meditate more. It’s going to be an incredible change not rushing to work, rushing to meetings, rushing to respond to emails, or just rushing to do everything within strict project timelines. I need to actually enjoy being able to focus on my breath and my thoughts as I become more mindful and reflective of the changes we are going through.
- Take photos. Write. I’ve been itching to essentially go back to what I loved doing. Some hobbies and past loves can be pushed back when we get thickly in the middle of a demanding career. I want to do the things that give me joy even if they don’t pay the bills. I want to share my heart and express my thoughts in the photos I take and the words I write. I finally have the time to do all these.
- Bring out the interior designer in me. New home, new project. I’m brimming with ideas and have completed my pegs and inspirations for the new home. Now, it’s about finding the right suppliers, planning each space deliberately, and fitting our ideas within our budget.
- Learn new skills. I’m convinced that the best years of my life are still ahead of me, and I’m ready to be a better version of myself by constantly challenging my limits and pushing my learning potential. New skills will agitate me and excite me and give me new goals. My problem is shortlisting what I want to do–because the list is a bit long!
It’s a wonderful time in my life and I have a spectrum of feelings to sort out. I’m counting myself extremely lucky because taking a break is such a blessing not many can afford to take.
I thank my husband for being 100% supportive of my transition. I will be giving updates here as I shall try to diligently tick off my top 11 things one by one!
Stay tuned! I may need cheering on. 🙂