Ready to Die? Just Retire

Our culture has tried to convince us we deserve to be able to retire – to remove ourselves from this thing called work.  But is that a privilege or a curse?  Research continues to mount showing those who retire at age 55 have double the risk of dying before reaching 65 as compared to those who work beyond age 60.

In The Prophet, poet and philosopher Kahil Gibran says this about work:  “You work that you may keep pace with the earth and the soul of the earth.  For to be idle is to become a stranger unto the seasons, and to step out of life’s procession, that marches in majesty and proud submission towards the infinite.”

Don’t become a stranger unto the seasons.  Don’t step off the platform of meaningful, purposeful and fulfilling work.  Gibran continues:  “And to love life through labour is to be intimate with life’s inmost secret…..Work is love made visible.”

I know you don’t want to stop expressing love to those around you.

I’m planning for my retirement party and my funeral to be on the same day.

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9 Responses to “Ready to Die? Just Retire”

  1. Josh Says:


    I think it is depressing that I have to wait until I retire to enjoy my life. I decided I do not, I can start today. It may take some work to get there but it is worth it.

    Josh Bulloc
    Kansas City, MO

  2. Andy Traub Says:

    Dan, I just can’t imagine you retired…not your style. Retirement for so many people seems to be when they quit adding value to the world. Great post.

  3. Rae Says:

    Hi Dan:
    Lovely words.
    I decided in my 20’s that I wouldn’t look back on my life at 60 with regrets for not having tried whatever crossed my path, that felt right.
    I’m proud to say I have stuck to this. I have an unconventional life and keep pushing at the boundaries.
    Not easy and not always socially acceptable, but I don’t regret a single choice. Who wouldn’t want to live in an ocean-front cabin for a year and chill?
    I too plan on sharing my gifts and blessings until I die.
    Why don’t people realize that we have a huge reservoir of heart knowing and wisdom the older we get. We all have much to share at every age.

  4. Joanne Miller Says:

    I can understand if someone is ready to retire from something they have done for a very long time and they want to move on to something else. To me, retirement from a “job” means releasing yourself to give back to the world in ways you didn’t have time to before. There are so many organizations and people who need help from those of us at retirement age who now have more time and discretionary income to give back to the community or the world at large. Just a new season of life!

  5. gertrude anthony Says:

    -I have enjoyed every bit of this write up; if you want to die, then just retire!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    -kept me thinking too

  6. Brian Phillips Says:

    I suspect that most people who dream about retirement as if it is some kind of Shangri La don’t enjoy their job. Otherwise, why would they dream of leaving behind something that they love?

  7. Funerals Says:

    before you die, plan you funeral. Make sure you go in style.

  8. Flo Says:

    Love the quote…”let my retirement party and my funeral be the same day”. I’m 71, my employer went bankrupt over a year ago, I had a job I loved, but have not yet found anything satisfactory. It will come though. Retirement is not good for me.

  9. toms shoes store Says:

    Your article Ready to Die? Just Retire | Dan Miller’s Blog write very well, thank you share!

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