Preparing For Retirement – Are You Ready?

There are those of us who are counting the days until retirement and the other group finds the thought of retirement a scary idea.

With some individuals work is a great release for social interaction and also gives them a feeling of accomplishment and pride. They’ve enjoyed their careers and find great fulfillment. Some seniors choose to completely ignore the thought of retiring. They do it because they chose to work not because they have to due to monetary requirements.

Another group is the ones I have the most passion for. They had hoped to retire when they’re pensions, investment and or social security kicked in. Our economy recently experienced a serious set back which caused the dream of retirement to elude some of the seniors in our country. Some lost all of their investment money and are being forced to seek employment.

The third category of eligible retirees are the group that have a secure financial investment in their retirement and they feel the earlier they retire the better. Many in this group enjoy the thought of not following a regimental work schedule and are looking forward to travel, or taking up a hobby that they never found time while they were still in the work force.

Retirement vs. Working

Hopefully, if you are reading this article you also have the added benefit of actually having a choice between the two. It’s so sad to read about the people that have not planned for their retirement, or due to circumstances beyond their control, their retirement plan is no more.

Some people are not cut out for retirement and will always have to keep a full time or possible part time job at all times. They like the routine, they love their job, their job has always been a big priority in their life, whatever the reasons, they are happier working. As long as you continue to be capable of doing the job well and your employer is cool with it, work until you feel the time is right. If your employer forces you out you may have to evaluate your strengths before pursuing a new job.

If you aren’t sure how you will handle it, try cutting back on your hours prior to full blown retirement. If it’s possible, start there and gradually cut back more and more.

If you haven’t made time for a hobby while you were younger, or you never had the time for a hobby – and it would be a great advantage to find one a few years before your retirement. Something must have peaked your interest, or a sport you always meant to try. I’ve heard of a rash of men reaching retirement age taking motorcycle riding lessons and for the first time in their live, making the big purchase and taking up riding.

Want to change careers? Go back to school. Learn a new trade. Take computer classes. If you are going to attempt re-entering the workforce without experience in the field, the more education the better. Or combine a new trade with starting up your own business. That way you will not have to deal with the issue of breaking into the workforce and competing with a younger generation of graduates.

Even if you prefer retirement, going back to school or taking a college course here and there is a great idea. It will keep the mind sharp, get you out on to the campus atmosphere, or at least a class setting, mingling with other humans and just getting out of the house. You’ll have a schedule which will give you some structure which is a good thing.

Retirement Location Suggestions

When seeking the best place to retire – you have to looks at your individual preferences and base your decision on your particular needs and resources. Figure out how much money you’ll have to live on. Consult with a financial advisor to help determine these figures if you need to. This is often one of the major considerations seniors take into account. If you decide to relocate will you be comfortable with any distance between your and your kids?. How often would you be able to afford to travel from your retirement choice?

Every year, major magazines come up with their list of top places to retire – read and glance through all of these and use these to assist you in narrowing down a list of possibilities or use it to begin your list of potential retirement choices.

They do the bulk of the work for you to find the current information about the best choices based on factors such as weather, median age, safety, housing costs, job situation, public transportation, health care and more.  A recent AARP study estimated that 70 percent of those 45 and older plan to continue working in their “retirement” years.  If this is you, but you’d like a career change – keep that as a priority in your retirement relocation choice.  If you move to an area that does not offer any employment opportunities for seniors, you may be disappointed and be disgruntled with your choice.

Things change year to year and you should keep an open mind before you make the big decision. If you are flexible with your retirement plans, keep an eye on the links below and determine your best options for the year you plan on retiring. And if you make the big move and find your choice was not the best there is no law saying you can’t change your mind and make another move. This may cut into financial resources so don’t jump from location to location foolishly, You have to do your homework and research.

As far as retirement goes, I hear 2 views. There are those that relish the time, filling up their days with activities and hobbies they never were able to enjoy while working a full-time job and raising a family. Then the other side of the coin, people who feel their days are hard to fill. “Retirement isn’t as great as you think”. Personally, I believe I will LOVE it. Time will tell.

This was a preamble into – the current stream of people who had hoped to retire in the very near future but are being forced to put it off due to economic woes and investments and retirement plans plunging.

There are so many categories of society so badly affected by our current financial crisis, putting off retirement is minor but still I feel for them. You think you have a plan, one that you’ve been depending on for decades and boom, the economy falls apart.

These days, people are grateful if they have a retirment plan to look forward to. Happy to have a job at all.
Lets hope next year we will see more jobs, more people put back to work and the economy on the road to recovery.

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