The way we think about retirement is changing, we are living longer and are healthier.
I get calls on a regular basis from people that have gotten to what we often think of as retirement age of 63 to 65, they retired and are now bored out of their minds. They are looking for something that they will find engaging. But that is just the beginning of the story!
Not only are we living longer, we are wanting to enjoy life to the fullest earlier while we are healthy and mobile. That gap between when we want to start living well and when we really want, or need to retire, is what I call The Happiness Paradigm. A paradigm is a model, mine is a model for long term happiness.
But weren’t we all supposed to do good in our jobs, serve our employer and then live a golden retirement of travel and shuffleboard? That was your grandparents game plan. With changes in retirement plans, life goals and longevity we are seeing a retargetting of that plan. We don’t just want to sit by a pond feeding the ducks at 65! We also don’t want to be 80 hour a week road warriors that don’t see our kids grow up.
So how does the model cover that time we are skilled enough to break out on our own, generate a regular income and see our kids grow up and those later years when we may want to really dial back how much we work and focus more heavily on other things entirely? For discussion sake, let’s say that timeline runs from 40 years old to 75 years old. In years past, that 35 years alone would be an entire career!
How can it be good to work that late in life? Because you don’t need to hate how you earn money and you don’t need to work crazy hours! If we do work we enjoy that can be something that keeps us engaged and, some would argue, helps us live longer (men, I’m talking to you). One truth I can confirm for you as a long time business owner, we are usually really bad at retiring but we can often be very good at living. To do that we have to build strong businesses and hire our replacements at every step. By hiring our replacements we put ourselves out of a job, continue to grow our empires and free up time. That extra time can be invested in business growth, family, hobbies or the ways you want to give back.
The thing that makes The Happiness Paradigm work is that as a business owner you have superpowers that employees everywhere don’t have. You can leverage money, time and resources in ways that would be impossible working for a big company. You can also sell what you build someday and capture the asset value you created.
This is a mental change that has served a lot of professionals in the prime of their careers well. Retire from being an employee and start being the employer. Retiring should never require giving up cash flow, you will just restructure how you work. You have invested in stocks and your 401K for years now, why not invest in a business you own, run by a CEO (you) that you know better than anyone else?
I bet you have always planned for the idea that when you retire you have to start taking money out of your savings to pay the bills and hope the money lasted as long as you lived! Don’t do that, The Happiness Paradigm rewires that program! You can create a custom solution that fits the lifestyle you want now and the cash flow you want to create in your later years. I would suggest starting to build with semi-absentee franchises, but you can accomplish the same thing by building the right team in a business you run full time to start.
Your lifestyle should include all the things that are important to you. Family, travel, hobbies, charity can all be part of the picture.
The business is something that will engage your mind and support your lifestyle. There are aspects of business we all enjoy from strategy to leading a team as well as even client and peer engagement. Dial in your involvement so that you get to enjoy the time you spend in business. If you feel you have gotten all you need from your apprenticeship in corporate America, then it may be time to take the reins and control your destiny. Use leverage and your skills to build your own Happiness Paradigm! And if you need direction, feel free to reach out. Always happy to offer free advice!
What is your perfect franchise? Let’s go find it!
George Knauf is a highly sought after, trusted advisor to many of the top franchise ownership groups in the world. With over 25 years of experience in both start-up and mature business franchise operations he is uniquely qualified to advise individuals that have dreamed of Building their own empires. Whether you have an existing portfolio or searching for your first franchise, he can help you to pursue your dreams. Contact the Franchising USA Expert, George’s Hotline: 703-424-2980.