Did you know May 20th is National Pizza Party Day? Not only is this hot-out-of-the-oven treat delicious and nutritious, but it may be a perfect metaphor for your retirement. Can you picture that?
“I envision my retirement plan more like a pizza,” says Jonathan Zacks, CEO & Co-Founder of GoReminders in New York City. “The shape of pizza has always reminded me of Dali’s melting clocks: slightly surreal, yet classy, perhaps a bit lazy, and no longer preoccupied with meticulous timekeeping.”
That’s one way to see pizza in your retirement. But the similarities don’t stop there.
Taking Things One Slice at a Time
Do you connect golf with retirement? Let’s hope that’s not where the symbolism of the pizza “slice” takes hold for you. Instead, think of the ongoing continuum retirement presents, with each dot along the way a different slice of your retirement life.
“Pizza represents retirement because it should be diversified and taken slice by slice,” says Erik Wright, Owner of New Horizon Home Buyers in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
Not only that, but how often have you eaten cold pizza the next day? Some say that’s the best pizza. Putting aside something for tomorrow is critical if you want a happy retirement.
“Pizza pieces are eaten slice by slice,” says Marlo Richardson, CEO Greenwood & Company in Los Angeles. “Sometimes you save some for later. The idea of retirement is to save some for later. The idea of saving is what makes retirement something to look forward to. As a business owner, you want to make sure that you’re putting a little bit away to save for retirement.”
It goes beyond simply consuming slices one at a time. It is the very tasty flavor that goes with each bite that comes to represent your approach to each day of retirement.
“Retirement is a time to enjoy the fruits of your labor,” says Scott Winstead, Founder of My eLearning World in Houston. “Just as you might savor a well-earned slice of pizza after a long day, so too can you enjoy a relaxed retirement lifestyle after years of hard work.”
What Ingredients Go On A Pizza?
How many different kinds of pizza are there? How many different approaches to retirement are there? No matter what, you can imagine a kind of pizza that compares a type of retirement.
On one hand…
“Retirement is more like a simple cheese pizza, where things are more stripped down and less complicated,” says Brad Hall, Co-Founder and CEO of SONU
While at the same time…
“Retirement is better represented by a pizza because the foundation is really what matters, and the toppings are the fun extras you throw in like trips and material items,” says Calloway Cook, President of Illuminate Labs in Northampton, Massachusetts.
What kind of hot pizza most resembles your retirement?
In general, though, just as it is the very ingredients of pizza that make each individual pie, so too do the various components of your retirement plan come together to form your personal retirement pie.
“Retirement is like a pizza,” says Monica Dema, Head of Global Content at MDINC in Morristown, New Jersey. “You need to spend the time to grow your wealth (crust/dough); you need to have ethics in your decisions because there’s no space for marketing schemes (sauce); the people around you should help guide your purpose (children to care for are like the cheese); and, toppings are your obligations that can change over time (e.g., a mortgage, multiple assets with liens, etc.).”
Just as with pizza, what you put into your retirement creates what you take out of your retirement.
“A retirement is an opportunity for a person to rearrange life and the free time allocation to the many possibilities and options that are available out there,” says Yoni Mazor Co-Founder & CGO of GETIDA in Teaneck, New Jersey. “In other words, when the time horizon opens up for a person it’s very much like preparing a new pizza pie and arranging all the possibilities together of what kind of crust, sauce, cheese, pepperoni and other toppings to make the pizza pie. As a retiree, you have the luxury of setting up your life in many ways just as pizza can be made. A key thing is to be able to have a good vision and mission of what you would like to accomplish during retirement. What kind of an experience and flavor would you like to get from all the time that is dedicated to a variety of activities that will be part of an ongoing engagement during you retirement? Much like a pizza, there are many options, but it is up to you to set it up in a way where it will all makes sense and provide a great experience.”
In the end, all these components define you and your retirement.
“Retirement is a pizza because it is the sum of your life, not layers of decisions,” says Dwayne Vera, Founder of DwayneVera.com in Tampa Bay. “If you retire properly, you can switch out various pieces (where you live, what you drive, how you travel, etc.), but still have some staples (good family, friends, stories).”
Put it all together and you’ve got a tasty treat that lasts through your remaining years. Each ingredient has an objective. And you can always sprinkle it with exciting extras should the budget permit.
“The goal is to have the entire pizza last your lifetime,” says Stephanie Metal, Head of Public Relations at Dirty Bourbon Clothing in Glen Burnie, Maryland. “Your sauce is a necessity, representing the things you’ll need to spend money on, while the cheese represents the wants, things you can scale back on in leaner years but add more of when you know you have more to live on. And as an added bonus, you can add any toppings you’d like along the way! Maybe you want to take a small weekend getaway, add some pepperoni to this slice. Maybe a Broadway show is more your style? Add some jalapeños and enjoy the show!”
What Are The Best Pizza Toppings?
Now comes your favorite part. In fact, it’s everyone’s favorite part. Everyone has their favorite combination of toppings to add zest to their pizza. Similarly, everyone has their pet ideas of what to do once they hang up their cleats.
“All those added toppings will only result in extra perks for you to enjoy later in retirement,” says Aaliyah Brooks, Customer Experience Manager at Twipes Limited in London, England.
In retirement, like in the pizzeria, the choices are virtually limitless.
“Just as there are different pizza toppings to suit every taste, there are many different ways to enjoy retirement,” says Iza Correll, CEO & Founder at OVI Healthcare in Somerset, Kentucky. “Some people choose to travel, others pursue hobbies, and others spend time with family and friends. No matter how you choose to spend your retirement, it’s essential that, like pizza, it’s a nostalgic combination of impact and experiences that comes together to honor the difference you’ve made in your lifetime.”
So, celebrate National Pizza Party Day by enjoying a slice of your retirement while it’s hot out of the oven!