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How to Retire Happy, Wild, and Free: Retirement Wisdom That You Won't Get from Your Financial Advisor Paperback – September 1, 2009

4.3 out of 5 stars 660 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Get Ernie J. Zelinski's book if you look forward to a retirement with 'zing!' "
- Nancy Paradis, St. Petersburg Times, Florida

"Trust me -- there are books about investing and personal finance that are far more complicated. But few are more accessible, useful and meaningful."
- Scott Burns, Dallas Morning News

"To be sure, retirement books are a glutted field, but most focus on money and financial planning. They view the finish line as the last day of employment. That's where Zelinski's begins."
- Jonathan Chevreau, National Post --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

From the Back Cover

"Get Ernie J. Zelinski's book if you look forward to a retirement with 'zing!' "
- Nancy Paradis, St. Petersburg Times, Florida

"To be sure, retirement books are a glutted field, but most focus on money and financial planning. They view the finish line as the last day of employment. That's where Zelinski's begins."
- Jonathan Chevreau, National Post
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Visions International Publishing; 13426th edition (September 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 096941949X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0969419495
  • Product Dimensions: 6.9 x 0.6 x 9.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (660 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,929 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Who Wouldn't Want To Be Coached By A Guy Named Ernie Zelinski? That's the title of an article I wrote about Zelinski's other books. I love Zelinski. This time his book, How to Retire Happy, Wild and Free is about living, although it's disguised as a book on retirement. It is his best.
I recommend the book for anyone under 27 years old because they are young enough to embrace the ideals of this book and shift their lives accordingly. They can choose to live the life their heart calls them too instead of the life the MBA drives them, too. After 27 years of age people get buried in delusions about the supposed necessities of life.
I also recommend the book for people over 50. These people are now wise enough to know better and can embrace the attitudes of Zelinski's retirement long before they stop working for money. His definition of retirement is all about following your heart and is not based much on working for a living or not. Retirement is a state of mind, and you can apply many of the ideas in the book today to make your life happy, wild, and free.
Zelinski is inspiring. Zelinski knows we are all creative; I agree. I am constantly urging my patients to have some creative pursuit in their lives. Here is what he says from the book:
Once you retire, you too can reclaim your creative spirit and find an artistic pursuit that will ignite your inner fire. Your artistic pursuit -- whether it's painting pictures, writing poetry, or making pottery -- will rekindle a part of you that has been suppressed for years by the structure of a job and the routine of daily life. Not only can it make you feel more alive, an artistic pursuit can constitute the primary reason for your being.
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Format: Paperback
As a Life Transition Coach who specializes in helping people prepare for and adjust to 'retirement' I am always on the look out for good materials to refer them to. Zelinski's "How to Retire" has become the staple that my clients are referred to again and again.

You can tell this guy really knows how to live life. He has become a huge invitation for people to wake up and smell the burning rubber of their feet dragging on life's treadmill! Even for that small portion of the working public who actually enjoy their jobs, he presents some compelling arguments as to why 'retirement' is an appealing option to work.

I'm someone who doesn't plan on a traditional retirement, yet there were times as I read Zelinski's thoughts and ideas about what's possible in retirement that it got me thinking that I may want to revise my plans at some point in the future.

The distinction between "feel good" and "values based" happiness that Zelinski makes on p. 96 really caught my attention and I've already begun weaving the importance of this distinction into the coaching conversations I have with clients. In short, it highlights how the buzz that we get from spending money and 'accomplishing' things diminishes over time so that we have to spend more or do more in order to get the same release from it. One of those laws of diminishing return things. Compare that to the long term satisfaction and gratification we get from engaging things that hold meaning for us and you discover a kind of happiness that actually grows over time rather than diminishing over time. Very, very important for those caught in the web of illusion that golfing/fishing/shopping/traveling are going to sustain them when they retire.
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Format: Paperback
I was looking for just this kind of book. Most retirement books are talking about money,and selling you something, this book talks about your life. I am a nervous Nellie when it comes to change or decisions. I research till I know the topic as well as I can and then make my decision.

I saw myself in so many discriptions in the book. I was a workaholic. I now know better and I am trying to change my thinking about work and leisure. I have taken more time off this year than last year to date and plan a lot more days off. I thought my world would fall apart if I did this. It hasn't fallen apart-matter of fact work has gone along just fine without me! This is something of a shock. All those extra hours were a waste of time, my time! I still have a lot of work to do on learning to find my life and live it "Wild and Free", but I am making some progress.

This book made me think about retirement and life in a whole new way. The humor, quotes and exercises helped me understand my possibilities better. I am retiring next summer and moving on to the rest of my life and looking forward to it. Thank you Mr.Zelinski!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is quite different than the author's other one that I like so much, "The Joy of Not Working." The format is quite different. In my opinion, the organizational structure is not as good. But in the end, there is a wealth of good, solid, useful, insightful information contained inside, and that would be the point of reading it in the first place.

In short, "Happy, Wild and Free" is another winner by Zelinski for retiree readers, and it can serve as a great "only" retirement book for those who are looking for that. I can't imagine anyone feeling they don't get their money's worth from reading the book.

Just a read of the preface may be worth the price of admission. Here we find a good overview of the subject of retirement, with some first-class comments to boot: "Retirement is the perfect time to become the person you would like to be and do the things you have always wanted to do." "Retirement can be both exciting and demanding, bringing new challenges, new experiences, and new uncertainties." "...retirement is the last opportunity for individuals to reinvent themselves, let go of the past, and find peace and happiness within." "Despite the bad press that retirement sometimes gets, there has never been a better time to be retired in Western nations." And the one I like the best: "The most fortunate of retirees are those who through good planning, experimentation, and risk-taking succeed in making retirement the best time of their lives."

I just don't think the elements of this retirement insight and advice gets any better any place else. I truly believe that Zelinski is the reigning guru on retirement, and I have since I first found and read, "The Art of Retirement." If Zelinski didn't exist, I think we would have to have invent him.
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