A wise person is quoted as saying, “We’ve put more effort into helping folks reach retirement age than into helping them enjoy it.”
With the average job length less than five years, the transition process and identification of criteria for career satisfaction are visited each time we look for new employment. Then rather quickly, it seems, we are looking at retirement planning.
“Don’t simply retire FROM something; have something to retire TO.” Harry Emerson Fosdick
As a Retirement Coach, the process is much the same as career transition, except we may be planning for up to 30+ years. As we compare the two – the job hunt is running toward something and retirement too often is running from stress and work responsibilities with the belief that now we will be in charge of our own time, be our own boss, doing what we want.
The focus for retirement is on finances. Will I have enough money to comfortably live? This is an important question, but beyond finances, we need to answer soul searching questions:
- What will my family’s expectations be for my time when I retire?
- How much of my social life was provided through work relationships?
- How will I replace the relationships lost through the normal work day?
- Where will I invest my time and talents?
- Where will my sense of contribution come from?
- How will I take care of myself, maintaining or improving my health, vitality and attitude?
- Where do I want to live?
- What are my leisure activities and hobbies?
- Do I want to travel or explore local opportunities?
- Do I want to work part-time, in the same industry or reinvent myself?
It is imperative that family members explore and discuss these questions, based on the following 2011 retirement study by Fidelity.
- One-third of couples don’t agree or don’t know where they plan to retire.
- Two-thirds of couples don’t agree on their planned retirement ages.
- Almost half of American couples don’t agree on whether they will continue to work in some part-time retirement job.
Rather than the tranquil retirement dream each had, they may experience anxiety and conflict because work has been left behind and they are now in the throes of retirement and cannot agree on tomorrow.
“You can retire from a job, but don’t ever retire from making meaningful contributions in life.” Stephen Covey
We have all heard of those who joyfully attended their retirement party with excitement in sharing their plans for enjoying life. Six months later the allure for owning their time has worn off and moving back into employment seems inviting.
“There is a fountain of youth: it is your mind, your talents, the creativity you bring to your life and the lives of people you love. When you learn to tap this source, you will truly have defeated age.” Sophia Loren
We want to take control of as much of our lives as we can. Retirement coaching can provide an individual or a couple a planned roadmap waiting to be implemented with excitement and hope.
The GCJ Group offers Retirement Coaching. Take control and be prepared. It is never too early to begin planning the longest transition of your life.