Don’t Leave your fruit on the vine.

By Mark Bertrang, The Creator of the Financialoscopy® on Thursday, December 14th 2023


I have a fascination with grapes and wine. I am a Vintner myself. When you come to our office, you will see that I have 2 grape vines along our parking lot. These are very specific vines that actually enjoy living in the state of Wisconsin during the winter. They have been formulated to survive our winters and also to produce a grape that makes pretty good wine. There is a famous university professor from the University of Minnesota who created this hybrid. The variety is called “Marquette”. The man who created that vine is Elmer Swenson. This may be more information than you wanted regarding grapes and wine-making. I would like to share a photo of these vines that I took recently. The reason I took it is because it made me think of people who still have fruit on the vine even though the leaves are all gone.

This is a good representation of people who are just dying to retire. They can’t wait to retire, but they still have fruit on the vine. It's getting closer to Christmas now so this is the time of the year that you can go to your local grocery store and you may be able to find a smaller bottle, about half the size of a traditional bottle of wine, called "Ice wine". Ice wine is made from grapes that are still on the vine well beyond the normal harvest and have frozen on the vine. Because of this, there is less juice (hence the smaller bottles), but what remains is very sweet. They pick grapes that look like they are almost rotting, and they make wine. It's actually a very delicious dessert wine.

What does this have to do with retirement? Many people are waiting to retire, but a lot of people still have fruit on the vine. They are in their sweet spot. There’s still so much more that they can give. They may have friends and relatives who are pressuring them and asking when they are going to retire. People do that to me all the time. I ask them why I would want to retire from a career that I love. Do not feel pressured by other people to leave a job that you love. if you don’t like your job, get out, but if you still have some fruit on your vine, this is an opportunity to continue to give your time, your resources, your knowledge, and skills learned throughout a lifetime. Don’t strip the fruit off of the vine; there is still so much for you to do.

If you are retiring at age 62, 65, 70, or 80, there is still so much time, so much to give. Don’t strip the vines. Work as long as you enjoy doing what you’re doing. If you don’t enjoy it, move on to something else. If you believe that you have knowledge worth sharing, don’t keep it to yourself. Don’t keep it in a bottle and not share it with others. Think of this stage of life as the sweet dessert wine, like the ice wine. Sharing with others is what we do this time of the year. It’s really what you should do throughout the year, give to your community: give your resources, time, skills, and energy. Don’t give in and plop yourself in a lazy boy chair and be done. You’re not. There is still so much left to give.

I’d like you to consider giving more of your life to others. If you are not a client of ours, consider what we have just talked about: the opportunities that still lie ahead in your life, and schedule your Financialoscopy®.


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