Opinion: Stay busy?

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Busy, busy, busy are we. We scurry about like some echo of our prehistoric progenitors, knowing that only the most tenacious and hard-working will survive the harsh realities of a violent world. The early bird gets the worm, we are reminded. Good. Even in a time of such global abundance (the World Bank and others of that ilk report poverty rates at a fraction of those 100 years ago in spite of a stunning increase in population), we — well, most of us — are loath to lie about. 

Where conversations may have once centered on the speed we might see to retirement, now many are imagining a working lifestyle well into our 70s and beyond. “I’d like to work less” say some.  Or, “I’d like more control over what I have to do.” But for many, the clarion call has become, “How many times a week can I really enjoy playing golf?” The point may be a good one. And aside from those of us who’ve suffered setback or circumstance, an extended existence of commerce or professional volunteerism may be on the docket.

Growing life expectancies predict we are going to live longer, and more full and heathy lives, than any group of humans to previously populate this rock, Earth. But with this new longevity comes a handful of contemplations. Is our hanging on keeping someone else from the job? For us now, at least, unemployment rates in Indiana suggest there is plenty of room in the workforce for seniors. How do we hope to live? There are more options for active adults now than ever – with many providing if one spouse is ambulatory and the other not-so-much. What do we want? If we can stay busy, should we? Must we? Many of us seem to think so. 

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