The Retirement Resource - Essentialism in Retirement

Essentialism In Retirement 

Joe Schum joins the show for another Coach’s Corner, in which we talk about the Essentialist philosophy. This is an idea that comes from the bestselling book Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less, written by friend of the show Greg McKeown.

Essentialism rejects the idea that “we can have it all,” instead suggesting that we should focus on “the pursuit of ‘the right thing, in the right way, at the right time.’”

It may seem like a common sense philosophy – to focus only on what you value most, saying no to everything else – but it’s not common practice.


  • What essentialism is.
  • The essentialist’s idea of work and play.
  • Boundaries in retirement
  • The power of saying no.
  • Paying attention to tradeoffs
  • How you can start implementing essentialism in your life today.


In your work life, play is looked at as a luxury item. But as we transition into retirement, play is there any time we want it. So what do we want play to do for us?

In retirement, play isn’t just about exploring what is essential – it IS essential, in and of itself, and it creates an opportunity to foster creativity; an opportunity for us to explore what might be essential, or what might bring meaning, happiness, and fulfillment into our lives.


Boundaries are critical in retirement because they can actually allow for personal expansion.

This is well illustrated in an anecdote from Essentialism: a family only allowed their kids to play in the front yard because it was safe, but the front yard was small. So then they built a fence around the whole backyard. Now the kids have three times more space in which to play – their world expanded because of boundaries.

So boundaries give us an opportunity to live the retired life that we want.

And if you don’t learn to say no and create boundaries, even with the people that are closest to you, then someone else will try to take control of your retirement. If you don’t take control of your agenda, there’s someone else out there that will.


Today, we encourage you to take a few minutes and answer these questions so that you have a better picture of your essential values and priorities:

  • What are my five favorite things?
  • Who are the five most important people in my life?
  • What are the five causes or values that are most important to me?
  • What are your five major life goals that are most important to me? (It’s time to get rid of that bloated bucket list!)

And you know what? Lists are made to be edited! Revisit this every few months, as your priorities will change as life changes.


Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less

Download the 12 Steps to a Successful Retirement Checklist at

Essentialism In Retirement


Other Ways To Enjoy This Podcast:

The Retirement Resource on iTunes





The Retirement Resource on Spotify





The Retirement Resource on Google PlayMusic





The Retirement Resource on Stitcher





The Retirement Resource on iHeart Radio




About Beau Henderson

Beau Henderson is a financial advisor, author, coach, radio personality, and CEO of RichLife Advisors. He has helped over 3,000 clients to not just improve their relationship with money, but to live the life of their dreams.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.