Are you considering retiring? If so, there are many questions that need to be answered before you make your decision.
There is a lot of confusion about what retirement really means in this century. This is because of the increase in lifespan. One of the things I suggest to my clients when they are considering whether or not to retire is to think of this time in your life in stages. Begin to plan in 5 or 10 year blocks of time because life can look very different at 65, 75, and 85 years of age. You can even choose 5 year blocks of time if that sounds better to you.
Keep this in mind when you consider the question, what does it take to live the life you desire?
You might start by thinking about other times of transition in your life and what you desired then. Some other natural times of transition are:
- Starting school (middle school, high school, college, and graduate school)
- Participating in sports, music, drama, or other areas of interest
- Beginning a new job, career, or a new position
- Starting a new relationship
- Beginning a marriage
- Becoming parents and eventually grandparents
Some of the above areas may still apply in your retirement. For instance, many decide to take a class or some training, do an internship or finish a degree. The important thing is to think about what was helpful when you moved through other transitions in your life. Definitely, having goals you are passionate about, focus, and self-discipline give you a good start.
As you think about what you would like this stage of your life to be like, the following tips will help you live the life you desire:
- Know yourself. This means being able to identify your strengths, values, and feelings. This is critical information for you to have when you make important decisions. What makes you, you?
- Have a dream about what you want to happen that matches your values (what is important to you) and uses your strengths. When you use your strengths, it is easier to be engaged or focused in what you are doing. You will not get bored with what you are doing.
- Be able to picture what you want – in color if possible. When you picture what you want to happen, make the picture large and close to you rather than small and far away. If you can picture something like this, it is more likely to happen. It also helps you feel more motivated.
- Set goals that are realistic, specific, and measurable so you will know where you are in the process.
- Be willing to put forth the effort needed to learn what is needed to help you be successful. Often becoming successful depends on your ability to persevere when things do not go the way you want.
- Be curious about life. It keeps you open to new ideas and learning experiences throughout your life.
- Discover ways to be flexible and open to change so you can make adjustments along the way.
The important thing to remember is that throughout your life, you need to know who you are and what is important to you. You might start by listing what you value in life, what is meaningful to you, and what you enjoy. Remember this stage in life is to allow you to have more freedom to choose what your life will be like. You might think of it as putting together a puzzle or designing a life that lets you flourish.
Life is full of opportunities, especially at retirement. When you let your choices reflect your dreams in a realistic way, you will discover how your confidence increases as your life unfolds.
If you want to make sure you are living the life you desire, let's talk. Email me for a complimentary retirement conversation to ensure your retirement is all you want it to be.
Until next time,