Retirement should be the best time of your life. No more early alarm calls, no more commuting and no more carefully counting your holiday allocation. Instead, you have the freedom to do exactly as you please. Yet retirement might not always work out as the idyllic move to a cottage by the sea it is billed to be. Some people, in fact, dread retirement and feel they are being put out to grass. They fear they will miss the structure and companionship that work gives.
Think of it more as ‘change’ not ‘old age’
Retirement is automatically associated with old age in people’s minds. The very word conjures up images of people sitting around in retirement homes in their slippers, watching daytime T.V. But this is far from the truth. Old age today, encompasses a vast span of years, from 65 to 100. There are many active retirees living life to the full. And if you think how much the average person’s life changes between 25 and 60, just think how many possibilities could lie ahead in the same timeframe. Going from work to retirement is a huge transition – yet people cope with many other major transitions during the course of their lives; having a baby, changing jobs, going through a divorce, moving house. The key is to use your resilience and strength from previous times of change to help as you move into retirement. Do not see it as entering old age, see it more as a time of embracing life’s opportunities.
Do nOt just be concerned about the money side of things
That may sound a curious thing to read in a financial blog. Pensions will form a key part of retirement planning. There is no denying that pensions can be complex so it is important to find the right solution for your situation whether it is taking an income or accessing a lump sum. But the financial side of things is much wider than just your pension. So take time to think about what your ideal lifestyle would look like. Think about some proper financial planning. What are your goals and ambitions for retirement? Are your current finances on track to help you reach them? The money is just an ends to enable you to live a happy retirement and find a new purpose.
Be clear in your mind what you really want to do
In today’s world, where such value is placed on career status, retirement can be seen as an end rather than a new beginning. But you do not have to be in paid employment to be happy and fulfilled. You may, in fact, find you achieve far more satisfaction in life after work. Why not do something you have always wanted to but never had time to? Learn to play a musical instrument, take up a sport, sign up for some volunteering, enrol on a course, get involved in a conservation project, travel the world… This is your time to do as you please. Remember, you do not have to be constantly busy – sit back and reflect on your true values.
Adopt a proactive mindset
You often hear stories of people becoming ill, or even dying, within months of stopping work – a cruel twist of fate after they have laboured hard for years, looking forward to their retirement. According to the Office for National Statistics, though, health and wellbeing do actually increase in retirement while depression and anxiety often fall. This is because people have more time to adopt a healthy lifestyle and find new sources of fulfilment and exercise. The key seems to be to make a determined effort to stay sharp, be proactive and keep stretching your boundaries. It may sound surprising but workaholics often love retirement as much as they loved their careers.
21 November 2018
The views expressed in this blog do not in any way constitute advice and are specific to the date noted. As time passes the facts can change and readers should consult their adviser for up to date advice on any matters covered within the blog. Invest Southwest offers an initial review, which is free of charge, however long it takes. From this we will be able to confirm how we can help and give you an opportunity to decide if you would like us to. Thereafter, we will provide you with detailed recommendations and exact costs. Please note that we promise not to levy any kind of fee unless we can demonstrate a benefit to you.