Published on April 15, 2019
I couldn’t even imagine retiring when I decided to open up to my sons about my situation. My younger son has a head for numbers and said, “I think you’re doing better than you think.”
I looked into it in my own analytical way, applied what I’d learned from my business experience and investment hobby, and realized I could – so I did! Although the details are a story for another time, I couldn’t be happier with things now as I focus on making the most of my retirement years.
Later talking with my friend Gail, her concerns were starker. She was very worried, perhaps even a bit fearful and confused, about being able to retire comfortably. My heart went out to her, so I put together a structured version of what I’d done and offered it to her.
She broke through her resistance and did the work, which I’ll say took some effort on her part, and the results were very gratifying. She later told me, “You helped me turn fear and confusion into confidence and a workable plan.”
She says she now has a much better understanding of the moving parts and trusts herself to make big choices with confidence. Now she and her husband are in a position to achieve their goals.
I’m so happy for them!
What Made The Difference?
Remember the tip I’ve shared in my last two notes? (“3 Big Retirement Questions” and “5 Steps To Balance Your Goals With Your Commitments“)
“The key is to get REALLY CLEAR about where you stand and what you want, and then to keep creating ways and opportunities to make it happen.”
In this case, the heavy lifting is on doing the work to get REALLY CLEAR about where you stand financially. Knowing that, you can begin to lay out your own workable plan to get where you want to go.
On the lighter side, the question isn’t at what age you want to retire, it’s at what income. And at least your investment in health insurance will finally begin to pay off!
OK, enough fun.
What are the basic steps first I and then Gail took to get clear?
This was the approach we used:
- Gather the financial information that will impact your retirement
- Make financial projections to see where you stand
- Do some analysis and ask “what-if” to check the sensitivity of your assumptions and to see what you might do to improve your situation
- Identify action steps based on what you’ve learned, for example reducing expenses, increasing income now and in retirement, adjusting your investment strategy, etc.
- Take action!
My lawyer told me to say, “Nothing contained here should be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any security. Nor is it intended as investment, tax, financial or legal advice. Investors should seek such professional advice for their particular situation.”
My suggestion is to find a good financial advisor and do this work with them.
A Way To Simplify Things
Here’s another idea I found helpful:
Rather than trying to build up a piece-by-piece detailed estimate of all the travel and fun I wanted to do in retirement, I simplified it.
How? I created one big play budget “bucket” that I use throughout the year for my retirement fun. That way if an opportunity or inspiration comes up, I can easily see if I have enough surplus in my play “bucket” to draw out what I need go for it.
It gives me another level of freedom and ease to enjoy my retirement life.
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I’ll be sharing more about ways I’ve been creating a great life.
And I’ve been developing some programs on ways I’ve done this, so you don’t have to invent them for yourself.
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Make it happen!
Eric @ ExploringRetirement.club
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