It wasn’t so long ago that ‘retirement’ meant a hard stop in people’s lives. They would quit work, pick up the gold watch and head for the bowling green. These days, people don’t ‘retire’ so much as redirect their energy to any number of activities, including paid work, creative pursuits, volunteering or looking after grandkids. Getting ready for this major life change obviously involves having a financial plan to ensure you have sufficient income to do the things you want to do. But it also means being prepared for the emotional adjustment that comes with the end to full-time paid employment.
Having a Plan
A financial plan is only part of the preparation for retirement. An often overlooked area is thinking about how you will use all that additional time. Australian financial website Firstlinks surveyed their readers on what advice they would give those thinking about retirement. There are some useful ideas here.
A Retirement Checklist
Your retirement plan can be simple or complex. It’s up to you. But some things it should include are the timing of the transition, lifestyle and priorities, income and living costs and future living arrangements. Whilst the following may comment on some Aussie centric benefits, most of the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) MoneySmart checklist items, apply to us in NZ too.
The Emotional Adjustment
If you’ve depended overwhelmingly on your professional career for your sense of self-worth, retirement can be something of a wrench. This is why making positive plans for how you will spend your time is so important. As this article explains, learning new skills and making new friends can be part of the plan.
Source: Jim Parker – Dimensional