Anything is Possible … in retirement

Our philosophy is that “Anything is Possible … if you put your mind to it”.  This is just as true for those considering or nearing retirement as any other age group.

We have many, many examples of people taking retirement or partial retirement and living a very full and active life.  This often includes completing long held dreams and wishes, doing things that people have been putting off and taking up new interests and challenges.

Some myths

Retirement in the 21st Century does not mean stopping.  In fact, it may well mean doing more – just different things.

Retirement is not all or nothing – one day working full-time, the next sitting watching the telly all day.  You can do a variety of things – some paid, some unpaid; some regular activities, some one-off.

And retirement doesn’t mean that you are any less.  You might even do things with even more purpose, that have greater impact and give you immense satisfaction.

Retirement can mean …

whatever you want it to mean, and

certainly doing more of the things that you enjoy and want to do.

It all starts with the way you think about it.


  • Fearing how you’ll spend your time
  • The loss of identity and friends
  • Changing of habits and routine
  • Concerns about money
  • Having no hobbies or interests.

Or, it can mean:

  • Freedom
  • Fewer ties
  • An opportunity to do new things
  • Chance to do things you’ve always wanted to do.

It’s your choice.  Think about it whichever way you want

There are so many things you could do …

  • Continue with some paid work
  • Volunteer to help a meaningful cause
  • Spend time with friends and family
  • Play sport
  • Travel
  • Write
  • Take up a new hobby or interest
  • Make new friends
  • Play or learn an instrument
  • Study
  • Learn a new language

You’re never too old

There are many examples of people having a successful retirement.  Take Kimani Margue for one (he’s the one in the middle).

In 2004, the Kenyan government announced that everyone was entitled to free primary education.  Kimani Maruge took them at their word and proudly turned up at his local school to enroll.  But Maruge wasn’t a child – he was 84 years old and a grandfather many times over.  He was from a desperately poor village and couldn’t read or write.

Taken aback, the head teacher told him he could not register because he did not have the correct school uniform.  Maruge duly returned some weeks later, arriving back at school in the same shorts and long socks as the other 6-year-old pupils.  However, this time he was told that he didn’t have the right books or pencils.

When Maruge returned next, armed with the requisite books and pencils the head teacher took him in.  So Maruge studied alongside two of his own 30 grandchildren – both of whom were ahead of him in the school. He needed help with his reading, but eventually he progressed to become a school prefect.

Maruge passed away in 2009, but not before he had addressed the Millennium Development Summit at the United Nations in New York on the importance of education.

Retirement – it’s not what it used to be

Call it what you want, our research and experience suggest that there are common ways to make it a success:

  • Choose to think about your future in a way that is most useful to you.
  • Purpose & challenge
  • Social network
  • Be physically & mentally active
  • Have fun

Find a balance of activities that cover these elements, some combine several of these.  Its why volunteering is so popular – it provides a purpose, is a chance to have fun with other people, can keep you mentally active and give great personal satisfaction.

Likewise, taking a course or studying for a degree or PhD, can provide all these elements.

And its about balance.  Too little activity can leave you watching the world go by; too much challenge might be stressful, for you or for your family.  But certainly, staying active seems the best way to minimise any future cost of social care.

After all, if I can, you can

I’ve been a Professional Coach since 1999, running The Red Rubber Ball Company.

Since turning 50, I changed my work routine to balance coaching with setting up a charity (The Red Rubber Ball Foundation).

I didn’t call it retirement, but I began to choose more clearly exactly how I’d spend my time.

My time is split between paid coaching, voluntary education projects, and time for myself.

Have I retired, or semi-retired?  Call it what you want.  I call it, doing more of the things I want to do; the things I choose to do

If anything, I’m busier than ever.

It has enabled me to volunteer at the Rio Olympics & Paralympics, climb Kilimanjaro, write a book, and complete the London Marathon.  I’d never done any of these before.

I’ve run workshops for kids in the UK, Kenya and Namibia, and gone through several passports.

My ‘family’ has grown from 2, to 195 children.

I’m a member of Rotary International, attend a weekly Pilates class with my wife, ski occasionally and play hockey every Saturday.  I’m fitter now than 20 years ago.

I’m not suggesting that you do the things that I have done.  But if I can, you can.

Start now

If you leave it until the day you do retire, you may increase your level stress levels and make the transition harder for everyone.  Start making small steps, now.

This is where coaching helps

Whatever you want, change can be troubling.  You may have genuine fears, doubts and concerns.  And this is where coaching helps.  Its completely confidential.

Coaching helps with this transition, so you can overcome any obstacles or barriers.  It helps you:

  • Have peace of mind
  • Think in a more constructive way + help you take control of your situation
  • Address any fears, doubts and concerns
  • Explore things that interest and excite you
  • Identify things that you want to be, do and have
  • Consider your options
  • Decide on the steps you’ll take
  • Keep up the momentum.

Where do I start?

ONE CONVERSATION … to understand your situation, hopes and concerns AND to help you start planning for the future.

Then depending on your timeframe, we will work through our FOUR STEP PLAN – Choice, Passion, Vision, Action.

If you’re close to retiring, then over 12 months, meeting each month or every two months,


If you have several years before you’ll retire, then we’d meet once a quarter or every six-months.

So if you’re interested, let me know and we can begin to discuss the options.