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Create a Picture Album Memoir

Saturday, February 12th, 2011

Once we retire we have a lot more time to ourselves. We have time to ponder, think and reflect back on our lives. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a beautiful picture album to accompany your life’s story?

Think back to those fond, childhood memories. Dig up old pictures and organize them in an order that makes sense to you – create categories if you wish. Maybe you’ll decide to go by birthday, by life phases, or by accomplishments. Think of your days playing sports, your first bike, your part in the school play, or that day your grandfather taught you how to play chess.

If you can’t find all of the pictures you want on your own, ask family members and friends. Find a photo book that suits you, or create your own! Go right back to your childhood roots and pull out the scissors, glue and cardboard colored pages. Consider adding captions to certain photos, writing page titles, or including fun quotes that you remember.

Your photo book memoir is all your own. Let it reflect who you are, what you love, and what has made you sublimely happy in past years. Once it is complete, you can enjoy your book every now and again when you need a ‘pick-me-up’. And, as your life continues, new memories will be formed. Add these to your album too and watch as your personal story evolves.

A Positive Outlook for Retirement

Tuesday, February 3rd, 2009

There is no doubt that if we allow them, news and media outlets will have us living in fear, anxiety and a general apprehension about the future.  It isn’t necessarily their fault – terrifying and horrible news sells!  No one wants to hear about the small and wonderful things happening in our local communities – these stories are far too boring.  Where’s the drama?  Where’s the heat?

Still among the top ‘negative’ news stories today, is the plummeting economy.  Sure, there is recent talk of the ending recession, but unemployment is high, people have lost a ton of money, and older adults’ pre and post retirement dreams have been crushed!

But wait!  Okay, so perhaps things didn’t go exactly as you had planned – but money isn’t always the answer to happiness.  Far too often, we allow this printed paper to rule our thoughts, and in many cases, even our overall state of happiness.

“If only I had more money, I’d be a whole lot happier.”
“I’m sick of working.  I wish I had enough money to retire.”
“Without lots of money, I can’t live my retirement the way I want to.”
“If only this recession hadn’t happened, then I’d be retired by now.”

Do any of these phrases sound familiar?  Good.  Now wipe them from your vocabulary – and your thoughts!  Too much concentration on money will leave little time for you to maximize your happiness in three other major areas:  in your personal health, through your family and friends, and from yourself.  By finding reasons to be happy in or because of these three aspects of your life, you’ll be able to enjoy a much happier retirement.

Research performed recently by Harvard students confirms the contagiousness of happiness.  If you are happy, you will naturally attract more happiness into your life, you will naturally find yourself spending more time with happy and positive people, and you will be more comfortable spending time by yourself in a peaceful and serene state of mind.

If you find yourself in a financial bind that you can’t do much about given the current state of our economy, then simply come to terms with the fact that your finances are unstable, unpredictable and hold an uncertain future.  Accept this as fact, and you will find more time to enjoy all of the other good things in your life.

Although finances will bring you stability in your retirement, it is your state of mind and personal well being which generates the success you will need to accomplish that stability.  It’s never too late to change your frame of mind, take control of your negative thoughts and live a happier life – before and after retirement.

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