Ken Dychtwald, gerontologist, psychologist, and researcher has studied workforce implications of the age wave for the past 35+ years. What was once known about retirees is changing dramatically. Add COVID to the mix and the implications and impact on the workplace are triggering departures unimaginable just 2-3 short years ago.
People are re-evaluating their lives. What’s important now may not have even been on their radar screen a few years ago. People want flexibility and they want purpose and meaning in the work they do. People who may not have considered retiring are now doing so sooner than expected. However, don’t picture them sitting on a beach or golfing every day. You would probably be wrong. Robert Laura, a Michigan-based financial advisor, retirement coach and Founder, Retirement Coaches Association, says that people are retiring while their gas tank isn’t quite yet on empty. Then what do they do?
People need meaning and purpose in their lives to be happy. Fundamentally, they may have been constrained by thinking of their paycheck and feeding their families first. They “tolerated” more than what many are no longer willing to tolerate. They still want a paycheck, but, some are now asking themselves whether their paycheck has to come from the source it has in the past, or are there other ways they can earn a living that may not take as much out of them? Are there ways, for example, that will allow more quality time with family?
The first group I want to focus on for purposes of this message pre-retirees closing in on the population defined as “retirement ready” – at least by Social Security standards. I will refer to this as age 65 for most of the baby boomer population because, generally speaking, it is at this age when many are eligible to receive their full Social Security benefit versus retiring earlier at 62 at a substantially lesser amount. And, for those of you in the group who are financially prepared to retire within the next 3-5 years, but not sure what you’ll do when you leave the workplace, this message has meaning for you as well.
Did you know that most people spend more time planning a vacation than they do planning for their retirement? There is so much to think about and plan for that doesn’t involve your finances. I would, however, be remiss in not encouraging you to seek professional advice to help guide you with your financial planning for retirement. This is not my area of expertise. While talking to a financial advisor is important, you will benefit simultaneously from talking to a Certified Professional Retirement Coach. How can you fully plan for retirement and the resources you will need in retirement, if you haven’t given even an hour of thought to developing a strategy for the non-financial aspects of your retirement?
What are the things you are passionate about doing that you’ve put off doing for so long? How can you take your passion and focus on this in life’s third stage? And, while we’re at it, let’s stop calling it “retirement” and find another name for it because, let’s face it, you may want to continue working but you may also want to do something different than what you are doing today.
As a retirement coach, I can help you think about these things now and help you plan for your successful life’s third stage – by successful I mean “happy and fulfilling” because many people don’t find this to be the case once retired. They lost their work identity and retirement hasn’t turned out quite the way they expected. This is not a surprise when so little thought and planning went into their decision to retire.
Let’s spend thirty minutes with one another, either by phone or virtually, to see if I am a fit for what you’re looking for in a retirement coach and for me to evaluate if I think I’m the right fit to help you develop a strategy for your life’s next stage.
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