Unretirement – How Baby Boomer Are Changing The Way We Think About Work, Community, and the Good Life
Unretirement: How Baby Boomers are Changing the Way We Think About Work, Community, and the Good Life by Chris Farrell, was released in early September of 2014. Chris Farrell is economics editor of Marketplace Money, a nationally syndicated one-hour weekly personal finance show produced by American Public Media.
The concept of retirement is a relatively new one. In the United States, it first was mentioned in 1935 when Social Security was created. It then became a really viable concept in the 1950s, when Florida and Arizona were being developed. Affordable housing and warm weather attracted thousands to live there in their golden years.
Chris Farrell writes in Unretirement that, for many baby boomers, the concept of retirement will be replaced by unretirement. It is the concept that, if we want to live longer, happier, and more prosperous lives, we need to work past the traditional retirement age of 65.
It should come as no surprise to most baby boomers that 80% or more of us will not retire as planned. This is where the concept of unretirement comes into play.
Chris Farrell writes:
The last third of life is being reimagined and reinvented into “unretirement.” If the popular images of retirement are the golf course and the RV, the defining institutions of unretirement are the workplace and the entrepreneurial start-up. The unretirement movement builds on the insight that a better-educated, healthier work force can continue to earn well into the traditional retirement years.
The author hypothesizes that, if baby boomers delay retirement to 70 years of age, most baby boomers will have a secure retirement.
Here is the challenge, will baby boomers be able to find adequate paying jobs to be able to work until 70 years of age. I wrote in my previous The State of Baby Boomers in America that in many baby boomers are retiring early because either they cannot find work or unable to work due to health issues.
The author states:
Employer stereotypes that view older workers as lacking creativity won’t hold up to scrutiny. The prejudice that older workers aren’t productive will be proven false. The competition for talented employees will push managers to abandon long-held hiring hurdles against aging workers. Seniors will recharge the nation’s entrepreneurial energy.
What do you think?
Baby boomers have redefined society to match their needs and wants. The author states that baby boomers will redefine the concept of retirement to create unretirement.
This will likely mean that most will work at both traditional and non-traditional jobs well after the age of 65. We will not necessarily work in the same industry or use the same skill sets but will reinvent the concept of retirement to live longer and happier lives…because we continue to work.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and agree with most everything the author hypothesizes. It paints a rosy picture going forward that looks very different from what we planned or assumed just ten years ago.Marc Miller
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