Following Your Passion


Retiring early seems more like wishful thinking rather than an actionable plan for most working people these days, but plan for it we still must, writes NOOR MUHAMMAD KHALID.


Ironically, working towards meeting your real end is always out of sight – even in the twilight years of your life.

Many there are who have been buried along with their unfulfilled desire to dedicate themselves to causes that benefit humanity; buried along with their hopes of acquiring knowledge beyond the needs of their profession in order to gain insight and spiritual satisfaction; and along with their dreams of exploring exotic countries and cultures.

I distinctly remember friends and relatives who resolved that they will retire after 40 so as to be able to devote time for ‘better pursuits.’ But, sadly, even at 60, most still believe that it is not feasible to quit ‘so early.’

Of course, the exceptions are those statutorily compelled to retire. But, these poor souls, too, keep vigorously hunting for engagements to earn money, till ill-health, or death, comes calling.

Indeed, inflation and the falling value of money are factors that have made it ever more difficult to give up a job, or a profession, in order to pursue full-time interests and activities that you always cherished. Even the excitement felt when conjuring up retirement plans seems to be sagging.

Moreover, the savings shored up, and the investments made, in stocks and real-estate seems all too little to allow you the decision to quit working and to spend the remaining years of your life following your passions. Thus, when your knees send up signals of old-age creeping in, you wish to dismiss this as a lack of some essential vitamins.

Yet, it must be done. The decision must be taken – before it is too late.

Start by adopting a minimalist life-style. Curb expenses which can be avoided. As for investments, do not put all your eggs in one basket.

Speak to your dependents of your plans and let them be mentally prepared. Of course, you must make sure your savings, and earnings from your investments, are enough to sustain any dependents, and your spouse.

After all, being prepared to meet your own end in the Hereafter is as important – if not of greater importance – as making ends meet Here.

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