Monday, September 8, 2014

This Is Your Brain in Retirement

I've had a few people express concern about my brain in retirement. There's been a veiled concern that my slower days may have led to my brain becoming less sharp. This question -- meant with genuine concern -- implies that my working days kept me sharp, or at least sharper. Folks, let me chat first about my working days, at least the last few years.

I spent approximately two hours a day riding rush hour subways. My days in the office frequently had brain numbing meetings and too often the time not spent in meetings was spent being a referee for personal issues and reminding staff that they needed to fill out time cards if they wanted to get paid. None of this stimulated my brain. Yes, there were some interesting projects, and I worked with some bright people, but every day wasn't all brilliant thoughts and expanding horizons.

Now...I actually keep up with the news, for better or worse. I keep up with sports, especially baseball and football. I'm following Derek Jeter's last season with the Yankees -- wish it was a better one for the Yankees -- and Eli Manning and Rueben Randle's season with the Giants. I keep up with exercise and have far surpassed any exercise I did in the last few years.

And I've been reading, something that got pushed aside. This weekend I finished two mystery novels and have a good start on the third. I've discovered several new writers, including John Connolly, who kept me totally engrossed for the weekend. His books focus on former New York City Police Officer, Charlie Parker, and are mystery novels with more than a splash of Stephen King thriller included. I started with his latest book, "The Wolf in Winter," via NetGalley, which offers digital galleys to bloggers and reviewers. I liked "The Wolf in Winter" so well that I had to go back and learn more about the characters. It's a complicated set of stories, but they have totally kept my interest.When I finish the book I am reading I need to take a rest. The characters and the plots kept me reading, but they are dark, dark stories. My next reading project is "The Goldfinch."

Best of all, there are times just to think and not be rushed, which might be the best gift of all. Is two months too young for a tutu for Baby Nora? Where should my group eat when we're in Savannah next month? Who in my life needs prayer?

There has been one issue that has come out of having more time. I seem to blog less. When I was working I didn't have the time to worry over every post. Now I am turning into somewhat of a perfectionist. Is the post good enough? Are the pictures well cropped? Do I have a vision for Buttercupland? In an effort to blog more, I will be blogging every day this week. They may not be the most polished posts, but I will be getting back into the writing and blogging I've enjoyed so much.

That's the state of Buttercup's brain. Happily, perking along. To end this post on a fun note, let's have some Monkey Monday pretty-in-pink fun.

This snowsuit would cheer up a cold winter day, and not just on Monkey Monday. 

It's been fun catching up. Now I think I'll tootle over to Talbot's and try on the "Happy Thoughts" shirt. It's been on my mind. As ever, thanks for visiting and take good care. 

20 comments:

Starting Over, Accepting Changes - Maybe said...

You have been doing great in retirement and have expanded your horizons. I admit that it took me much longer than you to feel good about retirement mainly because I did it I the deepest, darkest part of winter. I missed people and purpose, but I found both in volunteer work and am doing just fine now.

You are an inspiration, Carol.

Tracy said...

I don't think retirement numbs your brain. I think it allows you to make your own choices on what to think about and study. Much better than having someone else tell you what to do.

I'm counting down until I get to that happy state.

Kerin said...

Interesting perspectives....

I've wondered how my sweet husband will adjust to retirement, and therefore, I adjust to his retirement also.
Although, there are currently no plans for him to retire, he is eligible and it's something we talk about.

It's nice that you can find time to blog each day, and I'll try to find time to read your posts....although, I can't promise.
This week is gearing up to be a busy one.

Hope you're having a good day :)

K.

Simply Linda said...

Well..my husband is retired thanks to illness..unfort..thanks to his illness, he has had to relearn a few things (short term memory loss)..ANYWAYS--Buttercup you are far from "retired", you live down in the city, that alone, will keep you young and on your toes(smiles). What a great post, thanks for the photos..loves monkies!! Do they make those footies in adult size? (giggles)

Julie Corbisiero said...

Hi Carol you are such a busy lady and I always love stopping by to see what you are up too! You inspire me to keep up with the reading books. I read one over the summer and I'm reading an Agatha Christie book now. I promised myself that I would continue with it and I'm glad. Take care and have a nice week.
Julie

Mevely317 said...

Are you kidding me ... you, less sharp? Good grief - you're an inspiration; and more often than not prompt me to re-adjust my thinking cap!

Now, I'm wishing that monkey snow suit came in an Adult sizes!

PS - Not sure who baby 'Nora' is, but I love, love her name!

Betsy Adams said...

Oh how I relate to this post... I retired after working full-time all of my adult life in 2003, and since I had been a workaholic, my family/friends back then said that I would HATE retirement... HA---how silly they all were... I am so much healthier --even my brain--than I was when working full-time.... I finally am taking better care of me than I did before... I am doing things I could never do before. It's absolutely wonderful. Glad you are having a similar experience....
Hugs,
Betsy

Nellie said...

Reading is great exercise for the brain! Being able to enjoy what is around you is stimulating! Taking time to think of others! I think you're doing just great, Buttercup! xo

Su-sieee! Mac said...

Oh, you lucky retired gal. I look forward to the day when I can say I'm retired. It's been several months since I've come by and I'm glad I have. A friend is coming to your great city for a week next month and I wanted to let her know about your blog. She's bound to get great ideas of things to that are, as she says, "not of the obvious."

Sola Scriptura said...

I just adore your blog and always enjoy visiting your life here. I will have to add John Connolly to my list of authors to read... it sounds like he writes the sort of mysteries I love :)

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

I agree with you there wasn't much to stimulate my brain when I worked either. Strange someone would think that. I do have a friend that refuses to retire though saying she wouldn't know what to do with herself. I on the other hand never seem to have enough hours for all I want to do. I hope you do get the shirt !

Wandering Wren said...

Blogging every day this week - my goodness Buttercup are you sure, I thought in retirement you were supposed to take it easy?!! Laughing... as doing what makes you happy is healthy and I can tell you love your blog just as much as I love reading it, I will be with you every day.
Sending you a big smile from Australia - now don't you ever slow up Buttercup :)
Wren x

Theresa said...

I have been retired 12 years and my mind is just as sharp as ever:) Wait... what was I saying? Just kidding! I think if you sit in one spot, don't read or interact with people... you might tend to get a little mold on the brain! Not us, we stay busy and for that I am thankful! Enjoy your day dear friend, HUGS!

Ronda said...

You will enjoy The Goldfinch!

Ronda said...

You will enjoy The Goldfinch!

Susie said...

Buttercup, I think you have enough fun and interesting things to keep your mind sharp for life, right there in NYC !!! There are days I feel dull and days when I feel right on top of things. Blessings, xoxo,Susie

TARYTERRE said...

Retirement is the time to expand your horizons. So enjoy each new thing.

Elaine Sipos said...

Add The Secret History to your reading list. Donna Tartts first book.

Ida said...

You know when I quite working people said I would be "bored" and want to go back to working. That was over 15 years ago and let me just say I've never missed it at all. There is so much to do that I don't have time to be bored. I'm guessing it's the same for you and quite frankly your brain is just fine.

Melinda said...

What in the world were they
thinking?

M : )