Things I Don't Do
Retirement, and life in general, have brought about changes in my life. I’ve learned to stop doing some unnecessary things.
- Rain gauges.
I used to keep a functioning rain gauge in the most open spot in my yard so that I could collect and measure the rainfall. (Let me take a step back and say I am not a farmer or rancher and our garden/yard is supplemented by our rain barrels or water well if the rainfall is a little short.) I find it is no longer necessary to keep track of rainfall.
Other than the nuisance of the gauge cracking every winter because I forgot to invert it before the first freeze, I found that there just wasn’t a need for my statistics. When my father was living, this information was vital to carrying on a conversation over the phone. But I learned that after he passed away, very few people were asking me how much rain we received. For a few years, I simply relied on my good friends who lived across the highway. I figured it was less than a mile as the crow flies so we probably got the same amount. When the Clawsons moved, I just sort of gave up. And it has been okay.
- Paying Bills and making deposits.
When Jenni and I started traveling in our van Wanda for prolonged periods, we had to make some changes to how we handled our bills. For the first couple trips we tried looking ahead and arranging payments on the expected dates but that was just crazy. We finally put everything on automatic pay and just monitor it from there. And guess what—we haven’t been late on a single payment since then!
Another huge change for me was bowing to the pressure from my children to make bank deposits from my phone. I know. I know. The technology has been around for a long time but there was something convenient about pulling up to the ATM machine, making a deposit, and getting a little mad money back. That was fine while I worked and passed such ATM machine twice each day. After retirement, checks were collecting dust magnetized to the side of the refrigerator waiting for a trip to town. It was quite freeing when I downloaded the app to my phone allowing me to take a front/back photo of the check and deposit it without ever having to find the car keys. Feel free to write me a check and I’ll show you how easy the process is.
I don’t set alarms any longer.*
For over 35 years I double (and triple) checked my bedside alarm setting every night so that I would rise in the morning with enough time to do everything necessary to get out the door and reach work at a reasonable time. Since retiring, I’ve probably set my alarm less than a dozen times (usually because of some awful early morning doctor appointment).
* I will clarify that I do set an alarm on my cell phone quite often but that is to wake me up from a nap that started way too late in the afternoon and I don’t want to sleep until it’s almost time to go to bed!
Life changes are good for you. They prove you can adapt to your ever-changing environment.