Retirement is typically seen as the end of a career. In reality, retirement is the beginning of a spectrum of possibilities. This discussion explores the retirement journey, navigating the transition process, and the different options available as a side hustle post-retirement.
This session’s presenter is Wendy Hummell, the current Health and Wellness Manager for the Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office. She has 24 years of law enforcement experience starting her career at the Immigration and Naturalization Service and serving the Wichita Police Department where she retired at the rank of Detective.
Specifics of Wendy’s presentation include:
- Wendy’s retirement story that serves as a cautionary tale about the value of early retirement planning.
- The concept of the First and the Second Mountain – what these represent in our lives and what it provides us with.
- What transition theory is and how a transition process is never the same for everyone.
- The 4S that determines our readiness for retirement based on the circumstances we’re faced with, our personality characteristics, our support system, and our existing coping skills and tools.
- How public safety professionals tend to wrestle with identity as they adopt their careers as their identity.
- The concept of grief which results from loss – not just of a loved one but also of relationships, a job, or a sense of stability and safety which are all lost during retirement.
- How relationships with people who we are close to and share common interests, beliefs, and habits with are severed during retirement.
- The importance of peer support within professions including for retirees.
- The value of maintaining relationships outside of work through friends and family, particularly in retirement where work-related relationships are cut off.
- Well-Being: Why it is important to take care of this holistically, the specific areas that must be assessed, and the common adverse outcomes of failing to maintain our well-being.
- The struggles of the mid-life and lessons to take away as it relates to the opportunities that come in the second mountain and the regrets of the dying.
- Facts and figures on the law enforcement profession that illustrate the challenges that this population is plagued with in terms of mental health.
- The Limbo State Effect – how this puts those within five years of retirement at mental health risk and how this can be countered through preparation and planning.
- The four things that give meaning according to Viktor Frankl.
- Exploring what the webinar audience wants the do to get a sense of purpose in their life post-retirement.
- The Blue Zones Study that laid out the common characteristics, habits, and environments of people who get to live to 100 years old.
- The benefits of purpose to our stress level, longevity, cognitive abilities, and overall likableness.
- Cultivating attention by looking at our interests, our challenges, and the needs we identify within society.
- How side hustles, stemming from hobbies or passions, can provide income and purpose in retirement.
- Real-life examples of successful side hustles that those within the public safety realm took on post-retirement.
- How self-reflection is vital before retirement to address fears and explore potential ideas, and how proactive steps can pave the way for a fulfilling retirement.
- How taking action – no matter how small it can be – builds confidence and courage.
- How self-awareness can help address fears due to self-sabotage and the concept of the Upper Limit Problem.
Questions from the webinar participants are about:
- Identifying the side hustles to focus and take on through self-reflection.
- Recommended self-assessment, strengths, and personality tests.
- Networking and job boards for retirees looking for port-retirement opportunities.
- Support for retirees who are struggling with addiction issues and unresolved traumas?
- Whether Wendy would feel fulfilled if she didn’t take on a new career post-retirement.
Other Webinars with this Presenter
- June 1: Tools to Manage the Stress Response
- Nov 14: Side Hustles and Second Careers: Reimagining Your Professional Passion after Retirement (this webinar)
- Dec 7: Building a Wellness Program from the Ground Up
- Feb 29, 2024: Women’s Health and the Justice Workplace: The Relationship between Rest, Stress and Hormones
- June 11, 2024: Ask Me Anything: Building a Wellness Program for Your Agency
Resources and Handouts
- Book Mentioned Life After Law Enforcement by Brian Kinnaird
- Book/Author Mentioned: Nancy Schlossberg – Book (Among others): Retire Smart, Retire Happy
- Book Mentioned: The Second Mountain: The Quest for a Moral Life by David Brooks
- Book Mentioned: Man’s Search for Meaning by Vicktor Frankl
- Book Mentioned: The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks
- Ted Talk: How to Make Stress Your Friend – Kelly McGonigal
- Author Mentioned: John Violanti (Book: Police Suicide: Epidemic in Blue)
- Resource Mentioned: The Blue Zone Study (Also a Netflix Series)
- Resource from Audience: AARP Career Resource page
- Author: Scott Moon Amazon Page
- Chris Halloran Bash Brothers Barbecue
- Brenda Dietzman/Wayfinder Consulting
- April Thiesen One Peak Medical
- Book Referenced: Atomic Habits by James Clear
- Personality Tests
- “Very interesting and helpful. Personal stories brought it all together. Thanks very much.”
- “The Presenter shared a great deal of in-depth information that is relevant to the audience. WONDERFUL PRESENTATION!!!”
- “Christine and Wendy are gifts to the First Responders community. Both have empathy, patience, purpose, and strengths.”
- “Great information and knowing that I am not alone in struggling with the transition into retirement.”
- “I appreciate the resources and book giveaway, Free stuff is a great incentive!!! Thank you for an informative presentation !!!”
- “The book recommendations, and the questions to consider for what I would do if I could do anything, and knew I wouldn’t fail. I have read Viktor Frankl’s book twice, and definitely impactful.”
- “She brought to my attention about my mental and physical health. I didn’t realize how that could impact my retirement if I am unhealthy.”
- “Wow, being a couple of years from retirement, this webinar was very beneficial. What a wealth of knowledge and it opens up thoughts for things I need to work on before my last day. Awesome presentation.”
- “Wendy always does such an amazing job–love her insight, variety of topics, and viewpoints! Everything she presented today was something to think about and consider.”