Ten Ways To…

These days there are lists after lists of what you should be doing to live longer, make it to retirement, feel better, and all of that. Take a look online or in magazines. 10 ways to do everything faster. 10 ways to plan for retirement. 10 ways to feel younger. How did we ever exist without following some kind of list?

retirement listsI admit that the older we get the more confusing the choices get. We don’t have 30 or 40 years to clean up our act. Or maybe our act has always been clean. Yet we still want to grow, still want to improve. Still want to make that ethereal clock stop for as long as we can. There are hundreds of people out there determined to make our lives easier. Richer. Smarter. Some want to charge us for such eternal information; others freely give advice, having no idea who we are or how we got here.

You are not some naive nymph; you know what you’ve done, what you should do, what your downfalls are and where you are strong. You can’t stop smoking if you’ve never smoked. You can’t walk five miles a day if your body won’t let you. In this wild world of information, the best list of “10 Ways” comes from you. Why not make your own list?

You can make it 5 Ways or 8 Ideas or whatever tickles your fancy. Relax and think of 5 or 8 or 10 things you can do right now to make your future easier. Longer. Happier. This kind of commitment works better when you write it down, bringing it from the fourth dimension into this dimension, the one where paper and pen and computer – and life – exist. Make your goals you. Write down the things you do right and things you’d like to improve.

This is NOT a bucket list. Don’t write down “Have a café au lait in Paris,” if there’s not a chance in LaLaLand that you’ll ever get to Paris. Don’t write down things that are impossible. Make your list lucid. Don’t put a lot of “conditions” on your Ways. Leave yourself room on either side of the number.

I’ll call my list “10 Me-Things.” Think I’ll leave it at that.

  1. Get together with family and friends as often as I can. I already make a point of getting together, but I don’t want to let excuses getting in the way of friendship. There’s never enough time the way it is.
  2. Walk more. I know I don’t move enough, and my muscles are stiffening in return. A little walking goes a long way.
  3. Get a whiff of fresh air every day. I have an indoor, behind-the-computer job, which leads to headaches and sleepiness and tension. I also know how good it feels when I leave it all behind and take a little walk at lunch or after work.
  4. Cut back on carbohydrates. I am a pasta-head, but I’m trying to limit my portions and my frequency, for I know how sluggish I get afterwards. It’s just not worth it.
  5. Start saving money. Some recent unemployment blues had me tapping into money I shouldn’t have tapped into. Once things settle down I must start putting money away. No excuses.

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  1. Good list. I would like to add my own grain of salt :
    – do some light gym or yoga, take on swimming (and sauna from time to time) : it enhances the positive effects of walking!
    – watch less TV !
    – don’t be afraid to have an opinion on public issues, from local politics to global issues, and eventually act on it! it’s good sometimes to feel connected to the rest of the human race, not only the small family cocoon !
    – beef up a foreign language, especially as a foreign expat!

  2. …oh and I forgot : have a pet ! if you knew the joys I have with my Khorat!

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