- Embrace Change: As life happens, sometimes our plans need to change and we have to rethink retirement. Accept this and you will be much happier.
- Stay Engaged: Keeping active is important after you retire. Being able to do things, be it working a part time job that you truly love or taking up a new hobby, it’s important to stay engaged.
- Be Flexible: This is related to the first point. Be flexible on when you plan to retire or whether or not you plan to move. by keeping your options open, you will be happier.
I agree with all of these points. Most of us do not like change, but let’s face it, in life, things always change. It’s better to learn to accept change and go with the flow than trying to always resist it. When you try to always resist change, you think and act negatively. This has a big impact on your overall life and health. The world isn’t ending if you have to work to 65 instead of 60. Accept this and focus on spending time with friends and family.
Staying engaged is also huge. I’ve seen both sides of this. I’ve known people that retired and did nothing. When they were 75, it seemed as though they were in their 90′s. On the other hand, I’ve seen retirees in their 90′s that seem as though they are in their 70′s because they are always up and about, moving all around. My Dad retired by going from full time to part time for a few years. Once he fully retired, he has stayed active. He pays golf all of the time and does small projects around the house and works int he garden. Staying active allows you to fully enjoy your retirement.
Lastly, I think being flexible is big. Maybe you are on track to retire at 65 but you just can’t stand your current job any longer. But quitting and taking a position you really want may force you to have to work until 70. For me, if my current job was really that unbearable, I would rethink my retirement plans and consider working until 70. Likewise, if a child comes along, you may have to delay retirement. Be staying flexible, you can ensure you will remain happy now and into the future.
Don’t let retirement be some fixed idea that everything in your life has to fit around. If you do this, it will bring you a lot of stress and you won’t be happy. Instead, allow for life to happen and be flexible with your plans. I can relate all of these tips with taking a vacation. A vacation is much more fun when you stay active and explore. Just sitting around all day for a week isn’t much fun. Likewise, you have to be flexible. Maybe it will rain one day or one exhibit you want to see will be closed. Don’t let that one day spoil your entire trip. Be flexible and move on. You will be much happy in the long run.
Readers, what are your thoughts in these secrets to retiring well?