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It’s easy to look at retirement as a long-term vacation. After decades of working it certainly comes as a welcome break, but one of the biggest problems most retirees find themselves faced with is simply not knowing how to handle their newfound freedom. The good news is that retirement provides a lot of great opportunities; it’s just a matter of knowing how to manage your time and switching your focus. Here are a few general tips to ensure that your retirement will be a long, fruitful, and fulfilling one.
- Aging is not to be feared. A big mistake a lot of new retirees make is refusing to acknowledge that from here on out it’s time to take note of their age. While there will be some activities that gradually have to be replaced with less strenuous ones, don’t take it too hard, and most importantly don’t ignore what your body is telling you about them. Retirement is a perfect time to engage in intellectual pursuits and to look for new experiences. It’s not time to go overboard and try to play catch-up. Instead, focus on where you’re already at and go from there.
- Be financially frugal and experientially excessive. A lot of the most amazing experiences in life don’t necessarily have a huge price tag attached. It’s important to get in touch with a financial professional to help you plan out your retirement. Also, it’s just as important to spend the one resource you’ll be finding yourself with—time—in as many exciting and valuable ways as possible. While there are dedicated professionals for every aspect of your retirement assets, the experiences are going to be up to you which makes retirement a good time for a reasonable, well-considered bucket list. A good practice is to get rid of the TV for the first year or two, and experience the world for yourself, rather than through others.
- Make your legacy. You’ve lived an amazing and wonderful life, and now it’s time to relax. That doesn’t mean you have to stop being yourself or becoming someone you want to be. Writer, painter, eccentric, what have you, there’s no better time than retirement to truly express yourself and make a mark on your world in the way you want to. Take college courses, write stories and even books, learn an instrument; don’t let the only thing you leave behind be material and monetary. Allowing yourself to continue to grow and flourish, and to be who you are is just as important as any estate will ever be.
Retirement planning may seem tedious or frightening at first look, but at the end of the day there are a lot of professionals working precisely to help with just that. Enjoying your retirement is something you’ll be spending a lot of time focusing on, and getting in touch with an advisor gives more time for you to focus on all of the new opportunities and experiences opening up to you. Don’t worry about your age, spend as much time as possible doing and, more importantly, spending that time being who you want to be.