Give to live and get refired. I often tell people who haven't seen me recently and wonder if I have retired, "I'm not retired, I'm refired. I'm not gonna ease up, let up, shut up or give up until I'm taken up. As a matter of fact, I'm just getting warmed up!" The main reason I have no interest in retirement is because I don't think of what I do as work. What I do is help people learn how to live a more fulfilling life and I agree completely with Ann Holse when she says, "We make a living by what we get; we make a life by what we give." I say give of yourself and begin to enjoy the benefits of living a life that fuels hope in others. People who concentrate on others more than themselves have considerably less depression and do not suffer from loneliness. They contribute to their community in ways younger people with growing families are unable to. For example, I love the story of the man in his seventies who was setting out fruit trees at his summer home. A friendly neighbor jokingly asked him if he expected to live long enough to gather the fruit. The industrious planter said, "Possibly or possibly not. But," he said, "even if I never pick any of the fruit from these trees, someday someone will, so the benefits will be substantial."
The man with the fruit trees was doing something he could be proud of. He could watch those trees grow and anticipate the enjoyment that someone, perhaps even himself, would receive. Regardless of whether he benefited or not, the anticipation of someone else benefiting was sufficient for him. There can be just as much pleasure in planting those trees as there is in harvesting the fruit. And therein lies the answer to being happy and content for the entire length of our lives.