Everyone experiences retirement in their own way — and it’s been a topic addressed by some of the cleverest people out there.

Whether you’re currently retired, planning for retirement, or considering the possibility as part of your distant future, these quotes will hopefully inspire you to live out your post-work years as fully as possible.

“The trouble with retirement is that you never get a day off.”
Abe Lemons

The legendary basketball coach had a humorous view of the subject, but he brought up a good point — it’s easy for every day to feel the same if you don’t fill retirement with varied activities. There’s never been a better time to explore a new passion!

“There’s never enough time to do all the nothing you want.”
Bill Watterson, Calvin & Hobbes

As the cartoon artist and storyteller put it so well, some might be easily bored by retirement, but some could live for decades in a state of pause and respite. Before retiring, it’s not a bad idea to make a list or plan of some of the things you’ve always wanted to do when you had the chance, and make sure you can get to them.

“It is better to live rich than to die rich.”
Samuel Johnson

As the saying goes, “You can’t take it with you.” Thinking about this quote from one of the 18th century’s leading authors, “rich” might mean enjoying the money you’ve saved up, sure — but it can also mean a rich and rewarding quality of life. Retirement is an excellent time to cultivate warmth and joy in all facets of your life.

“Half our life is spent trying to find something to do with the time we have rushed through life trying to save.”
Will Rogers

The great American humorist has a point: Once you find yourself free of the responsibilities you grew used to in your work life, it can be hard to know what to do with all of your newfound time. It’s no wonder so many retirement communities are offering more perks and amenities than ever to combat boredom or idle minds.

“I found out retirement means playing golf, or I don’t know what the hell it means. But to me, retirement means doing what you have fun doing.”
Dick Van Dyke

For the leggy song-and-dance man, retirement means finally having time for all the golf in the world. In your case, it might mean taking those pottery classes you’ve always been eyeing or learning how to make a mean pad thai. Whatever it brings, there’s room for fun to be at the center of it.

“Retire from work, but not from life.”
M.K. Soni

This quote from the inspirational author might mean something a little different to everyone, but the sentiment is consistent: Just because you’re retired doesn’t mean you have to check out of life completely. On the contrary, retirement can be rife with travel and adventure opportunities that working life didn’t allow time for.

“Retirement: That’s when you return from work one day and say, ‘Hi, honey, I’m home — forever.’”
Gene Perret

As the comedy writer notes, another incredible perk of retirement is finally spending a lot of quality time with your loved ones. This might be a spouse or romantic partner, or it might mean having time to travel to kids and grandchildren. In either case, retirement and quality family time often go hand in hand.

“Often when you think you’re at the end of something, you’re at the beginning of something else.”
Fred Rogers

Listen to Mr. Rogers: Like the end of anything, leaving the workforce can be a bittersweet time full of open-ended questions. But the door that retirement opens can provide a well-deserved breath of fresh air — and at the very least, permission to take a load off and relieve the stress of striving in the workforce.

“For many, retirement is a time for personal growth, which becomes the path to greater freedom.”
Robert Delamontague, The Retiring Mind

As the education author describes it, retirement can also be a time to delve into mindfulness, spirituality, or bigger thinking, if you’re so inclined. And healthy new habits help older bodies stay limber and mobile.

“Working people have a lot of bad habits, but the worst of these is work.”
Clarence Darrow

Finally, let this quote from the legendary defense attorney leave you on a positive, lighthearted note as you remember that the best part of retirement is, of course, the fact that you no longer have to work on anything you don’t want to work on. Hobbies and passion projects can take over your time, and you’ll have more hours to spend on the people and activities you love.

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