This is Ray Loewe’s mantra that is at the crux of his series of life-changing courses. We’ve all heard the phrase “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life”, and it can be true for some people. However, it may still feel like work because, let’s face it, you’ll still have deadlines and you won’t be sitting on a beach under an umbrella. The difference in Ray’s philosophy is that it is possible to find the right balance between work and play so that each one can be more rewarding. And finding that balance can make all the difference between counting the years until your retirement and changing your career to suit your style so that you can continue to work, be challenged, be productive and enjoy it for as long as you like.
Enter David, who was introduced to Ray in recent years by a mutual acquaintance. He and Ray hit it off right away. They had a lot in common…they were both approaching retirement age and wondered how to handle tasks, careers, finances, etc. Their early conversations focused around how to help people disperse their wealth in healthy, practical, fun and sometimes generous ways. Whether it was spending some of their money for their own enjoyment, explaining to their kids in an honest way what they were going to inherit, or distributing their money in a philanthropic and charitable manner.
As they looked at their own situations, as well as others that they knew over the years, some similarities seemed to emerge. They found that, often times, parents weren’t being honest with their children about their potentially life changing inheritance. Maybe it was out of fear that if children knew what was coming, they might not have the motivation to work and be productive. Or possibly the subject could cause siblings to squabble and argue about what the future would bring. Alternatively, had children known what was coming, it might cause them to feel more secure about their future to be able to seize an opportunity or take a risk that they otherwise might not have had the confidence or financial security to do.
As their friendship grew, they shared with each other the comfort that each felt with change at any stage in their lives and they mutually embraced the notion of continuing to work, even in their supposed retirement years. During David’s career, he always gave 110% to any job. Even though he always liked what he was doing, stress was a big part of his everyday life. Whether it was dealing with difficult people, worrying about day-to-day tasks or simply waking up in the middle of the night with ideas, he could never turn himself off. While his wife didn’t really believe that he was ever going to be retired, David realized that what he really needed to do was to get away from the stress.
So, after a 40+ year career running performing arts centers in many states, David decided that 2010 was his time to retire. It didn’t last a week when he got a call from the first theater he had ever run. They needed help filling some gaps and asked David to volunteer to help secure some donors. 18 months later, David retired again. This time, only three days later, a foundation called him and asked for his help and expertise. David worked with them for five years and finally said that it was time again to retire. But this time, he decided to work as a consultant to be able to control his time. What he found was that he was working more hours than ever before. So he finally said that was it, and he retired again. While committed and determined to make this one stick, he got a call a month later and was asked to help as the interim CEO of a state historical society. Six months later, he is still working in that role. Apparently retirement isn’t his cup of tea, but he knew that about himself already.