How Much Time Do You Spend Cultivating Friendships?

by Hank Coleman

Can you list your ten closest friends? When was the last time that you talked to them or even sent them an email? Do you remember their birthdays without the help of Facebook? We are all so busy with our own careers and families. But, have we forgotten our friends?

The guy who was my Best Man in my wedding was my best friend all through high school and middle school. We played soccer together for almost a decade and were inseparable. Even though I still list him as one of m best friends, we went our separate ways to different colleges and then took jobs in different states. Like many adults, we have drifted apart. I am ashamed to say that I cannot even remember his daughter’s name or the name of the new company where he works. I have not been as good of a friend as I could have or should have been.

So, why do I care so much? A recent article in Money Magazine actually got me thinking about it. What am I going to do with my life in retirement? I know that it is a long way away, and I have a great family base. But, eventually, my family is going to get tired of seeing my ugly mug everyday, day in and day out during those golden years. And, who am I going to get play golf with me every morning. Yes, you read that right…every morning. Hey! Everyone has to have retirement dreams. It is what gets me up in the morning and keeps me going at the day job. And, you need friends to spend time with during those dreams.

Most of us focus on the money aspect of retirement.  Are we saving enough?  Will I have enough to play a round of golf everyday? Or, am I going to have to hit a bucket of balls four days a week instead of walking the “good walk spoiled” everyday? We focus on the money but neglect the unquantifiable aspects of retirement. What and who are really important to you?

The Money Magazine article suggested checking out the Retirement Circle Worksheet at www.retirementwellbeing.com.  It is a good resource for just this subject.

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