Dieters, frustrated novelists, and daydreamers all know that there’s a big difference between intention and action, action and following. Even those preparing for retirement do so. So the next time you hear yourself or a soon-to-retire friend say they’re ready to let go of some great things, take a break.
Then you ask: “Really?”
For those serious about retirement done right, preparation isn’t just financial. You can try golf for the rest of your life or rest on the laurels of your career successes. But the experience won’t be as rich or grounded in your new reality.
So what should you prepare to part with? And can you do it? Let’s see if you resonate or resist these three realities.
Not to be missed
Say sayonara to things
If you really believe that the one who dies with the most toys wins, then maybe you haven’t given much thought to the fact that it has an eternal locker.
The thing is, excess stuff will weigh you down, especially if you want to travel or spend more time taking care of your relationships (more on that in a bit).
Retirement marks an ideal time to take inventory. How many trinkets have you accumulated? Do you really need it? (In most cases, probably not) What’s stopping you from parting with them: Logistics, emotions, or some combination?
Taking the first step to thin out the herd of excess assets, especially collectibles and bulky items, can also boost your retirement savings.
You are no longer your career
Retirement means a welcome end to overgrowing and borrowed identity. We’re not at work ourselves, and going back eight hours a day leaves many people surprisingly at a loss in terms of how to redeem that.
And no wonder. If you’ve worked pretty much your entire life to achieve a career goal, win awards, gain status, and reap the rewards, then chances are a good part of your identity is tied to your career. Abundance bound. Letting go of a rewarding occupation is difficult.
Plus: Are you ready to give up the adrenaline rush of hard work? Or the recognition that comes from someone asking, “What do you do?” Or the realization that your work has given you?
If you’re not so sure, then you’re in good company. A survey cited in USA Today found that 47% of retirees were still working in retirement, with a whopping 72% of pre-retirees saying they would like to continue working.
Indeed, some people never retire in the traditional sense of the word; even athletes usually come out of retirement. To figure out what works for you, keep in mind that however you structure your golden years, plunging too much identity into your career will raise questions you don’t want to ignore.
To know more: Here’s how much the average American 60-year-old holds in retirement savings: How does your nest egg compare?
All that disposable income
One of the main reasons many retirees don’t want to give up their jobs has to do with income security. What if you get sick? Does your partner lose their job? Or another emergency lands meaning you need cash on hand? Having a job often takes the sting out of such scenarios.
Meeting with a financial advisor before retirement — decades first, if possible, is essential. They can help you determine a dollar savings goal to ensure the quality of life you want and strike a balance between checking off bucket list items and saving for emergencies.
Currently, 48% of working people feel they don’t earn enough) to be able to save for retirement, according to statistics cited by annuity.org. What’s worse, 22% of Americans have only $5,000 or less saved up for retirement, while 15% have nothing. Taken together, this is more than a third of the workforce.
While Americans struggle with low savings, Social Security, pensions (where applicable), and other financial assets can provide financial relief. On the other hand, expenses that have escaped notice for years — real time wasters like unused memberships and subscriptions, for example — are now ripe for a bit of a cull.
Real Retirement Wealth: It’s All About Relationships
New retirees who have hit 60 often struggle with the belief that their best years are behind them. The idea of cutting ties with work and its myriad distractions can be terrifying. Why is this?
Consider for a moment the strong bonds we form with work colleagues and what happens to them when we retire. This truth is the key to a rewarding, exciting, and happy retirement: now is the time to double and triple relationships.
The Harvard Study of Adult Development followed two groups of men over 80, making it one of the most remarkable longitudinal studies in history. His most recent conclusion is irrefutable: The people most satisfied in their relationships at age 50 were the healthiest at age 80.
Retirement is a time to give up the stress of work and stress relationships instead. If you’ve spent your career hoping to strike it rich, but haven’t, this is the way to do it. Money can buy quality life, but not quality time.
If you’re financially secure, good for you. The race is run. You are now in an ideal position to reap investment rewards of a different kind.
A golden option for your golden years
With the economy in such a volatile state amid high inflation and stock market uncertainty, your 401(k) or IRA — and your retirement itself — could be at risk.
You could try adjusting your retirement accounts for better protection, but there is a lesser-known alternative that could pay off big time.
A Gold IRA is a type of individual retirement account that allows you to invest in gold and other precious metals in physical forms, such as coins, instead of stocks, mutual funds and other traditional investments.
It’s a great alternative because unlike the US dollar, which has lost 98% of its purchasing power since 1971, gold’s purchasing power remains more stable over time.
Opting for a Gold IRA gives you the opportunity to both diversify your portfolio and stabilize your finances – and gold tends to involve less risk than other alternative investments.
If you want to open a Gold IRA, there are reputable services that will allow you to transfer your current 401(k) or IRA into this new account. To qualify, you must be over the age of 59 and have at least $70,000 to transfer.
This article provides information only and should not be construed as advice. Comes without warranty of any kind.