Our career is part of our life’s plan – we start work hoping to be successful, make a difference and create a lifestyle for ourselves and our families. As the years pass, that goal also includes how to plan for a great retirement, so that the fulfilling life you have enjoyed can continue. Retirement is a major life change – when you have spent so much of your life defined (in part) by your work, to stop takes some planning. Emotionally, it can be a challenge, as well as practically and financially.
Retirement is ideally the reward for a full working life. However, it can sneak up on you – for many people, the spectre of retirement is ‘one day’ or ‘far away.’
It is important to spend some time thinking about retirement, planning and addressing the issues which arise – procrastination will not keep it at bay!
Money is a necessary evil and affords us fun, comfort and experiences throughout our lives. Our lifestyle relies in part on what we earn, and how that can be allocated. Life can easily be filled with other matters like relationships, family, careers, homes, cars, travel and the like, but financial planning is necessary.
Retirement can be likened to a train approaching. In your early working life, it seems such a long way down the track and not of real concern. Later on, the rumble starts to grow and 10 years out from retirement we can hear it coming and see the light – decision time!
We can’t afford to view retirement as just an endpoint of working. It is the beginning of a new phase where your time needs to be constructively spent. Step through the portal of retirement – leaving a paying career behind and into the ‘Golden Years’ of our life.
Based on current mortality rates, the average person can expect to live a further 20 years after turning 65 – that period is almost the equivalent of half of our working life. That being the case, do you have the health and wealth accumulated during your working years to enjoy this new lifestyle in retirement?
Now is as good a time as any to prepare for this new life stage.
By Alex Sharp.