Levels of Retirement Planning That Can Work For You

By: Wayne Miller

And it is true that a big part of being ready to retire involves being ready financially to be able to step out of the work world and start to take life easier.

But just as life is not just about making money, retirement is about so much more than having the money not to work. Preparation for retirement also means preparing to live a simpler life, preparing to become a senior citizen and a grandparent and preparing to look at life differently.

Your health care is going to be an important issue in your retirement years. As you enter retirement, you may be strong as an ox and active and full of health and life. But any of us can fall prey to poor health or accidents. And if your employer from whom you retired does not extend your health care insurance for you to continue your coverage past your employment, you should make other plans. You can continue the same coverage that you had under the Cobra system but that can get pretty costly and dip into your finite retirement savings pretty significantly. Medicare can be helpful too. But to be perfectly comfortable that you have coverage, look to Medicare supplement insurance so you maintain the same quality of care in retirement that you have now in the working world.

Do not just limit your retirement planning to your money. Your retirement will be a time of a big change of lifestyle and a change to your values and how you spend your time as well. You will have more time on your hands and studies show that those who enter retirement without an agenda can become adrift in all that time and that is not healthy. Human beings are doers so even though you may no longer be working for a living, find ways to be productive and make a difference in your community. You can start finding those opportunities long before retirement so when you finally step out of the work world, expanding those hobbies and volunteer efforts is as natural as can be.

In addition to the change of where you spend your time each day, you may have even a bigger change in where you live ahead for you in retirement. Many times people who step into their retirement years find that maintaining the house where you raised the kids is just not necessary and more work than it worth. Selling the home and using the equity to finance a leisurely retirement life is a great way to go. But you should start early both preparing the home for sale and preparing the family that a grandma and grandpa house is going away.

In addition, where you go to live is something that can be great fun to dream about and doing some research on just the right place. You may choose to rent a small place in an older part of town and enjoy a whole new lifestyle in that setting. Or you might go for a high-rise condo with a view of the river or a nice quiet apartment in a retirement oriented apartment complex where you and other retirees can explore this new world together.

Above all it is important to embrace the retired lifestyle with the enthusiasm and excitement that you might greet any new opportunity. Do not let being retired mean just not working. In fact, go through the mental and emotional exercises of putting the working world behind you and redefining yourself in this new role. You are retired now and you are a senior citizen and maybe even a grandparent.

These are not negative things. There is a strong role for grandma and grandpa in society and in your family. And the world takes great joy in a senior citizen who embraces that time of their life and sets out to be the best senior citizen they can be. If you predetermine that this is the kind of retired person you are going to be, that attitude will propel you past that sudden change of life shock and get your retired life off in running in an exciting way that will lead to many happy and fun times in your life of leisure as a retired person.

Retirement
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