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The days of the handshake, gold watch and lifetime pension are gone. Even retiree health insurance plans are being phased out by one large company after another. Many of us are planning to work beyond our mid-60s, but why?

How many of us have made plans for the next stage in our lives? Are we afraid of having to face retirement? I admit that many of us fear the effect that loss of stimulation will have on our mental capacities. Will our brains remain agile when we are not as challenged as we are today? Yet how much longer can our bodies handle the stress of our 24/7 lives? The deadlines and technology driven ideas of the “next gen” leaders we now have to follow? In a word, the stress?

Are we staying at our desks because we need to feel important and relevant? If we want our experience to matter and our self-esteem requires us to be listened to, how do we accomplish this? With adequate financial resources we have opportunities to determine our futures. Final careers can be as simple as continuing what we have enjoyed professionally, but committing to fewer hours so that we can pursue other interests. Alternately, they can be a formalization of activities to which we have wanted to commit more time. Without adequate financial resources our options may well be limited to employment that provides the income we need in retirement.

Have we looked deep inside ourselves to determine what we would really like to do past our mid-60s? Surely there is more than a rocking chair and a nap waiting for us after we leave our careers.   An assessment of our financial and medical health will guide our options, but how about our dreams? Have we set aside enough money to go where we would really like to go and have we taken good enough care of bodies to be as active as we would like to be? If the answer is no to either or both of these questions we need to focus immediately on remedying the problems.

There are retirement calculators on financial websites to help us make well-informed decisions about the extra money we may need to set aside as well as how to time our exit from the workforce. There is also a plethora of wellness information to help us address improvements in our diet, exercise and stress levels that will make us healthier. None of us make good decisions when we sleepwalk through life. It is time to wake up to the opportunity that retirement can provide us and prepare to maximize our enjoyment of our “golden years”.

We would love to help you make a solid, well thought out plan for your retirement. Get in touch with us at CDA Inc. today.