My vital retirement routine

After two long weeks of holiday, yesterday marked the full return to work for many people in the UK. It also marked the return of my semi-retirement routine, something I’ve learned is a crucial part of staying sane when your life is no longer dominated by work.  It took me a listless few months to get into it but now it’s essential part of my life.  

Here is my daily weekday routine which goes something like this:

6 amMrs Jones awakes for work and therefore so do I!  Check and respond to work emails, brief freelancers etc.
6.30 amWrite and promote blog.
7.30 amWalk to gym – a fertile time for life ideas which I record en route.
8.00 amExercise – treadmill or weights followed by a swim
9.15 amCatch up, chew the fat, put the world to rights, have a moan with other like-minded semi/retirees at the gym.
9.45 amWalk home listening to music or a podcast.
10.15 amWork – more emails, calls, meetings or other work-related activities.
12.15 amWatch the BBC’s Daily Politics and get annoyed at what the politicians say!
Eat lunch or breakfast.
Free time – see daughters, gardening, other life planning activities.
Work –  complete tasks before end of day.
Tidy house I’ve messed up ahead of Mrs Jones return. 
Tidy office, update ToDo list in readiness for tomorrow, do more little life chores.
Mrs Jones gets home from work, dinner and then the evening begins.

Sure, the schedule and timings change from day-to-day but this is the default and feels busy and productive enough most of the time.   When I was working full-time I became a bit of a devotee of the Default Diary.  After 30 years of work it was something I’d never heard of and found to be a powerful tool for which I credit the ActionCoach business mentor I worked with for some time.  Check it out here.

Example Default Diary from ActionCoach

This activity-based start to the day with writing, walking and fitness has also helped me cut-out one meal a day, a crucial component to my weight loss campaign.  The 30 minutes in the sauna talking to others gives me the all-important social interaction I now feel I need.

There’s then a bit of a routine around my weekly activities including making sure I make the most of our weekends together, see family, do parkrun, eat out etc.

Finally there’s the more informal goal of trying to do something a little exciting at least once a month such as holidays, weekends away, trips to the theatre etc. 

I’m such a nerd about routine that I’ve actually got a default diary in place for my whole waking life though rarely referred to.  It’s strange isn’t it that when humans are faced with freedom we need routine, or at least I do, to give life structure.

Am I unusual in this?  Do other retirees crave order and routine.  Drop me a line, I’d love to know.

Published by brianjonesdiary

Dad, husband, brother and son. Interested in travel, politics, sport, health and much more. Semi-retired and aiming to making the most of life as I approach my sixth decade.

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