Friday, July 24, 2009

Rediscovering my Early Interests

As I advanced in my career, I became more narrowly focused on skills, information and activities related to my work. As result, I slowly stopped doing many of my extracurricular activities. Now that I've retired early, I have extra time to reacquaint myself with my childhood hobbies and interests.

Here are the one's I've rediscovered so far:
  • Sports - From the age of 7 to 30, I was regularly playing in a variety of organized sports including football, baseball, tennis, rugby, softball and volleyball. By my forties, I was only playing an occasional pickup game of tennis.

    Since retiring, I've joined a gym and workout 5 times a week. I'm also playing outdoor tennis once a week and will be rejoining an indoor tennis league this fall.

  • Kit Building. As a child, I loved building models of World War II airplanes. On the first Saturday of each month, I've started taking my daughter to the Kid's Workshops at Home Depot to assemble the woodworking kits they provide for free.

    I still have some unbuilt models from my childhood in storage. When I find them, I may start building them again.

  • Stamp Collecting. I started a stamp collection as a child, which continued through college. However, I stopped collecting not long after working. My father-in-law is an avid stamp collector and is helping me work on my collection again.

  • Volunteering. I did a lot of volunteering from high school through my mid-thirties, including being the president of several organizations. By my forties, I was no longer doing any volunteer activities.

    I've started volunteering at our local parks, in a non-leadership role, to earn activity perks for my family in the future.

  • Here are some activities from my youth that I expect to rediscover:
  • Coin Collecting. As a child, I loved looking through loose change and finding old coins. Although it is nearly impossible to find old coins in change nowadays, I will likely take out my old collections and look through them in the future.

  • Pinball/Foosball/Pool/Video Games. As my ability shows, I spent way too many hours doing these activities in college. They were stress relief outlets for me. However, as I got older, I rarely ever played these games.

    We have both a Foosball table and pool table in our house, which I hope to spend more time playing soon.

  • Fishing. I loved fishing at our local lakes when I was kid. Using bread and worms as bait, I'd catch blue gill and catfish. It was a great way to spend a couple hours in the afternoon.

  • Here are some early interests that never became hobbies, but I may do now:
  • Fossil collecting. As with most children, I had an interest in dinosaurs and collected a few small fossils. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to find them in my parents house, which may mean they no longer exist.

    I currently live in an area with an abundance of fossils. I may take the opportunity to do fossil hunting.

  • Magic. I've always had an interest in magic tricks. However, I've never had the time or patience to learn and practice a repertoire of tricks. Now I may have the time :-)

  • The one activity from my early adulthood that I don't plan to do again is to run for public office. While I enjoyed being a candidate in late twenties and early thirties, I would not enjoy doing it nowadays. Besides, there are too many other fun things on my list that I want get to first.

    For more on Reaping the Rewards, check back every Friday for a new segment.

    This is not financial or retirement advice. Please consult a professional advisor.

    Copyright © 2009 Achievement Catalyst, LLC

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