The transitions from employment to retirement can seem daunting; exposing many personal, social, domestic and financial uncertainties.
As a social institution, retirement implies the regulation of older workers’ withdrawal from the work force. As an experience, it refers to a multitude of life changes brought about by the decision to stop working.
The picture of retirement is changing dramatically. The process is radically different from that of our parents and grandparents short, and perhaps not so sweet, experience.
The traditional vision of retirement in our grandparent’s era was typically viewed as “an inevitable event,” around the age of 65, when one went abruptly from full employment to full non-employment. Work was predominantly physical, the body simply wore out, and retirement was usually a period of idleness, and in some cases declining health. It was a short period that began when they couldn’t work anymore, and ended when they died. The key to retirement during this era was simple: plan prudently and live frugally to ensure financial survival.
The twenty-first century version of retirement is rather different. We leave the workplace earlier; leave it part-time; leave later; leave and then return OR we follow the traditional model, and leave the workplace entirely in our mid-sixties. We are no longer required to pay attention to the demands of paid work; retirement is viewed as a long period of “entitled leisure.”
One reason that there has been a change in retirement is the increase in longevity, and an overall improvement in health.
There are two important variables to consider in regards to retirement, and the quality of a retired life; health and finances. With these in a positive place, retirement can be a valuable and enjoyable time of life. However, without the luxury of financial freedom, or good health, life might prove to be extremely burdensome.
The tragic demise of the United States’ social security system bodes poorly for those individuals who have not done well saving for their financial future, and the looming years of retirement.
Retirement Planning is a question of when to stop working, and how to spend one’s resources wisely; the way in which money is spent and saved will determine the retirement experience.
So make sure you spend some time preparing for the years after you leave the workforce. It could mean the difference between living a happy, fulfilling, exciting life versus a difficult, bitter, draconian one!
Have an opinion or a question you would like me to answer; write to me! http://www.CarlHampton.com
“Your” Money Matters by Carl Hampton
From the Author of “From Credit Despair To Credit Millionaire.”