Monday, January 16, 2012

How do we use this time?

Recently I watched a TED Talk by Jane Fonda who focused on life's third act.  One thing she said, "How do we use this time?" - referring to the years after 50 - resonated with me.  It can be a challenge to use our time meaningfully while aging.  My struggles to decide what to devote my time to revolve around a series of questions.

- Should I seek out more paid work to continue to use my education and experience to contribute financially to my family or can I let that go?
- Do I seek out volunteer activities that address problems in the world that I dearly wish were solved or do I pursue those that hit the "sweet spot" of my lifelong interests and provide a "fun" quotient?
- How much time do I spend on health related activities such as exercising and creating healthy meals?
- Do I devote a few or many hours to having fun, exploring my world, sharing time with friends?
- How much time do I spend on activities that are of low or no value to me and how do I stop doing that?

I could go on.

How do you use your time during your third act?  How did you decide to use it that way?


  1. Thats a BIGGIE!! Ha, I left my paying job 3 years ago due to deteriating health, and I felt I was being told to go home by that little voice inside. I didn't want our grands in daycare so that was one of my focuses, another was doing what I could in small ways to help others. Getting back to who I really am (mom, wife, nanny, homemaker) has made a HUGE diffrence in my life, when I was working full time I was running around so much I had no idea what end was up, now that I am home we are in much better shape, I can spend time planing where our $$ go and watching what we spend. We have more money saved now the house is is better shape and my health has greatly improved after giving up a $50,000.00 year job, go figure!! Good luck on your quest to find what your calling is!!

    1. Debby - It sounds like you have made it all work for you. That is great.

  2. I've been giving a lot of thought to this as well. This is my second year of retirement and I feel like I have nothing to show for it. I spend a lot of my time helping my elderly parents. Since they've gone to FL, I've decided to volunteer at our local library. I picked up an application Saturday. That's a start.

  3. Good luck with your volunteering. I love helping out our library and have become very involved with the Friends of the Library and the county wide Library Foundation both of which are focused on raising money. I love to read so this was a good fit. Hope it is for you too.


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