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  • Writer's pictureJames Wylie

Retirement and How to Prepare

With baby boomers coming of retirement age, accelerated by the impact of the pandemic, it is often a time of excitement as well as trepidation. Often the transition can be almost traumatizing for some if they are not prepared.

When we work, we look to retirement as some foreign distant land that we will someday visit and it will be all Porsches and Palm trees. We work and put away money in our 401K or IRA accounts with the hope to cash out at some point. In truth, we do pay some glancing attention at times but we concentrate on the here and now and hope that there is enough when we retire. For sure, if you work for a company that offers matching, do max out in your contributions. It is a no-brainer, easy way to get 50 to 100% return on every dollar you invest.

So the financial part is one aspect. The other aspect and probably just as important, if not more, is the emotional, psychological, and social aspect. Professionals who have spent 8 to 10 hours a day working are surrounded by issues and problems which they have to solve. These people often work with colleagues or in a team. They go to meetings, sometimes even travel internationally to meet with colleagues in other countries. You have days when things go badly, you stress but there are days that things go really well and you have euphoria. Either way, you have an adrenaline rush. You encounter this daily. However when that day comes where you have to final exit interview and have to wind down, it is tough for some.

As a coach, I can help you prepare for retirement. I would suggest that if you know retirement is in the horizon, that you start preparing about 3 years out. One recommendation that I make is to live on a budget that would equal your retirement income (and you can project out what that income is) and bank the leftover. With regards to deciding what to do beyond playing golf or traveling (and nothing wrong with that if that is all you want to do), we can work together to find a passion that would keep you mentally and psychologically challenge.

Like anything else, preparation for retirement will make the transition easier.

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