Are you really ready for retirement?

  • Are you prepared: the average person spends more time planning their annual vacation, than their entire retirement (Photograph supplied)

    Are you prepared: the average person spends more time planning their annual vacation, than their entire retirement (Photograph supplied)


If you are approaching the age of 60, it is normal for thoughts of retirement to start occupying your mind.

For some people, the last five years of work seem like an eternity as they count the days and months until they are “free”.

For others, not working is so terrifying that they scoff at the very idea that they will ever stop.

Regardless of whether you are desperate to leave your job or determined to stay as long as possible, studies have shown that the average person plans longer for a two-week vacation than they do for their entire retirement and that we could all do with more comprehensive life planning.

Maybe the problem is simply that a lot of us no longer relate to the word “retirement” itself because it conjures notions of sitting idle with little mental simulation or activity.

Whatever your vision of later life, it’s fair to say that few of us actually dream of sitting in an empty living room with the cat for days at a time. At the very least, we have ideas of spending time with grandchildren or travelling the world for a while.

But are these ideas even realistic if you don’t know what sort of lifestyle you will be able to afford once you are living on a fixed retirement income, or whether the person you live with will support your chosen lifestyle or fight you at every turn?

Is it possible, or even probable, that you have fallen into the trap of viewing a change of life that will permanently affect you both as simply “your retirement”?

Whatever you have been considering, there are few key things that every baby-boomer needs to consider before they embark on the third phase of their lives, and a lot of them involve coming to some sort of an agreement with the person that you live with.

Check out the following list to get an idea where your future planning for the next phase of your life really stands and then consider asking your spouse or life partner to do the same.

Whether the results are comforting, enlightening or shocking, you will have a much clearer view of what lies ahead:

1, What changes do you want or need to make to your lifestyle once you retire?

2, What is the No 1 retirement fear that you struggle with?

3, Does your spouse or life partner know about this fear?

4, What can you do to convert this fear into a life-changing opportunity that will benefit you both?

5, What are your personal retirement dreams?

6, Have you discussed these dreams with your spouse or life partner?

7, Without asking, how much do you know about your spouse or life partner’s retirement dreams?

8, What problems do you foresee in making these independent dreams into a combined reality that will suit you both?

Robin Trimingham is an author and thought leader in the field of retirement who specialises in helping corporate groups and individuals to understand and prepare for a new life beyond work. Contact her at www.olderhood.com, 538-8937 or robin@olderhood.com

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Published Mar 12, 2019 at 8:00 am (Updated Mar 12, 2019 at 7:34 am)

Are you really ready for retirement?

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