How do I make a successful leap to retirement?

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Retirement May Mean Retirements–Plural!

In today’s world, the idea of retiring from work and never returning is less popular than it used to be. Many of our clients and friends are switching up the work they do instead of quitting. Some of them take off work for a year or several years, and then go back to work in a new direction.
They are not doing this because they must do it for financial reasons, but because they either want to (or must!) do it for other reasons that are more important to them than money. As Marla Mason, CFP® said in a recent presentation, “many people who are working in their retirement years are there by choice.”


I view it as five new jobs for retirees:

  1. New work identity
  2. New meaningful tasks
  3. Stay relevant and connected
  4. Mentally and physically active
  5. Financial wellness

New Work Identity

We spend a lot of time with the people we work with. A friend of mine told me, remorsefully, that he misses his work colleague.

“I spent most of every day of my life for the past 15 years with the guy. Now I haven’t even seen him in three years. What happened?!”

Another friend of mine went back to work in a low-paying, low-stress job just for the opportunity to see people again. He feels useful and he is having fun. It is a lot easier to joke around and make people happy when you do not have to worry about all the responsibilities of management. 

Stay Relevant and Connected

With more time on our hands, we have more time to spend with friends. The technology boom makes it easier than ever to form new relationships and rekindle old ones. The community around us needs our advice and they are always looking for participation. The connections with other people are more important than ever in our new, Covid-19 world. Saying even a few kind words to someone can make your day and theirs too! Staying relevant and connected is one of the big jobs for the retiree. 

Mentally and Physically Active

We can easily slip out of shape and lose our physical and psychological health when we make a dramatic shift in lifestyle. Retirees have a lot to do—and one of them is make sure to exercise our bodies and minds! Games on the mobile devices are good for the mind. Walking, swimming, sports of any sort are great for the mind and body. Finding a balance is important. Often, I hear that retirees’ days are filled with activities. So much so, they say, they did not know how they could get anything done before!

Financial Wellness

Finally, the finances are the fifth job for retirees. I use the phrase “wellness” because this job is not about maximizing money. Clearly, we make more when we work more. In retirement, in particular, we want a healthy relationship with our money. We want to spend it on the things that are most important to us.
Money in alignment with our values, goals and relationships is an unalloyed good for the world. The financial assets in life enable us to achieve success in the other areas of our lives. So work with your financial planning professional to help you grow and protect what is most important to you.

Summary

Retirees are busy—you have a lot to do! The five jobs for retirees are 1) develop a new work identity. 2) Find new meaningful tasks. 3) Stay relevant and connected. 4) Stay mentally and physically active and 5) financial wellness. If you dedicate a little time each day to these tasks, then you will increase your chances of great success!

Need help with your retirement planning? speak to our retirement planning advisor today.

About the author

Karl Frank, Certified Financial Planner ®, MSF, MBA, MA, is the President of A&I Financial Services LLC, a local business that specializes in wealth management, insurance planning, and retirement planning. Karl cares for business owners and the businesses that care for them. Learn More about Karl.