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Planning Retirement Online

Other Aspects of Retirement Planning

The previous sections of this Guide look at various aspects of why we should plan for retirement and they deal with what perhaps could be described as the basics of our planning. However, there are other issues that are, in their own way, just as important and that we should think about as part of our planning process.

Why Plan for Retirement? links

Lifestyle

We need to consider the type of lifestyle that we want because, to a large extent, this will determine the kind of choices that we make. For example, if we think that we're likely to want to go on holiday at the drop of a hat we shouldn't commit ourselves to regular work or regular classes of any kind. If we do, we will give ourselves stress when we want to go on holiday but have other commitments to think about.

On the other hand, if we think that we're going to need some sort of stimulus to encourage us to do things and to meet new people, then maybe some sort of regular commitment will suit us very well.

So think about what we want in general terms from retirement and then make the details fit round it.

 

 

Self

We should think about what sort of person we are and what we want from retirement in order to make the choices that will provide us with fulfilment in retirement.

So we need to think about ourselves in terms of our skills, personal qualities, characteristics and personality traits and then choose things to do - be they work or leisure - that will fit what's inside us and makes us tick. If we don't, we're unlikely to get fulfilment and satisfaction from them.

We should also think about our values and what it is that gives us satisfaction out of life. Some of us prefer small groups of people to large numbers, some of us like creative things whilst some prefer precision and order. Some people want to feel secure while some of us like a more risky challenge.

These and many other aspects of life give different people satisfaction and we need to think about what it is that provides it for us before we launch into things. If we do things that don't meet our values and preferences, they are unlikely to prove rewarding.

Hobbies and Pastimes

Once we've retired it's likely that we will want to do more leisure activities. The average person spends between 50 and 55 hours at work or on work-related activities such as commuting. So, when we retire, there is a lot of time to fill and hobbies are one way of using our time. We do hobbies and pastimes because we enjoy them so it's worth spending some time considering the type of hobby or activity that we will truly enjoy.

So we need to think about the issues that are referred to above - our own personality and our values and preferences - when we're considering new leisure activities. There are hundreds of hobbies and pastimes but they won't all suit us. We need to plan the things we are going to take up so that we make the right choices and we gain enjoyment from them.

Travelling and Holidays

We will lose a lot of social contact when we leave work, so we need to replace it so that we get that external stimulus that we need. One way of doing this is by travelling, taking regular holidays and generally getting out and about. This will, in turn, help us to keep our brain active and also, to a certain extent, our body. Not only that - most of us thoroughly enjoy being out, travelling around and taking holidays!

It's therefore important that we think about what sort of pattern we want for our travelling and holidays. If we want to be able to go at short notice and/or to spend three months abroad in the winter, that will impact on our other activities. So we need to think about how important travel and holidays are to us and what priority to give to them. Is everything else going to revolve around them or will they be secondary to the other things that we want to do?

It is important to think about these issues so that we don't get stressed trying to resolve the conflict that will result from too many things competing for our time.

Moving House

Many people choose to move house in retirement. Some of us do it soon after retirement, for a number of reasons. Downsizing is a very common and very good reason for moving, for example. Other people move to be closer to family, to go back to where they consider 'home' and any number of other reasons.

As we get older, there are a number of other reasons why people move. It may be that we need a house that is easier to maintain, has a smaller garden or is closer to shops and other amenities.

Many experts say that if we do feel that we will want or need to move in retirement then it's better to move sooner rather than later, while we're fitter and have more opportunity to make new friends and build new networks. So we need to consider and plan the issue of moving house - possible reasons, timescales and so on. It's important to get it right if we do move because it's far too stressful and expensive to move, find that we've moved to somewhere we don't like and have to move again.

It's even more difficult if we're considering moving abroad. There's the increased difficulty of researching possible locations because of the distance involved. There are also issues such as pension provision, currency exchange, property and inheritance tax laws and access to medical facilities, to name but a few. For some help and guidance on moving abroad, take a look at the laterlife Guide to Moving Abroad.

Relationships

Retirement should be a time when we can strengthen our relationships, be they with a partner, friends or family. We'll have more time to devote to the special people in our lives and so we should be able to improve and deepen our relationships with them.

However, these relationships will be different, particularly with our partner. Never before will we have had the opportunity to spend so much time together and so the relationship will change - particularly when both partners are retired. All relationships need working at and if the relationship is changing, then it needs working at even harder. So we must think about how we're going to handle it and talk about it with each other.

We also need to understand how the relationship will develop with family and friends. Just because we now have more time to devote to other people, doesn't mean that they have more time to devote to us. So whilst they will undoubtedly appreciate a little more attention from us there may be limits and we have to be aware of other people's needs and space.

So we should think about and plan just how we're going to handle the new opportunities that arise for developing our relationships. If we get it right they will be even better than they are now but it won't just happen and, if we get it wrong, our relationships could even suffer.

These issues should form part of our overall plan for retirement. A proper plan can minimise our potential concerns and maximise our enjoyment of retirement.

So read the rest of the Laterlife Guide to 'Why Plan for Retirement? by clicking on the links in the box. It will give you food for thought so that you can then make your plan. You might also like to look at our Planning for Retirement workshops and then ask your employer to pay for you to attend one. You will be able to spend the day discussing your retirement and gleaning ideas from others about how to best enjoy the rest of your life.

Why not read our introduction to Why Plan for Retirement? and then take a look at our innovative e-learning online planning retirement workshop by visiting www.planonline.co.uk.  If you purchase a licence you will find all the knowledge and experience distilled from our real world workshops, covering every aspect of retirement lifestyle and finances, with the ability to visit and revisit the workshop as often as you like to build and refine your own plan for retirement.

You might also like to look at our 'real world' Planning Retirement workshops and then ask your employer to pay for you to attend one. You will be able to spend the day thinking, planning and discussing your retirement and gleaning ideas from others about how to best enjoy the rest of your life. It's well worth spending one day to make the most of the next 10,000!

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'How ready are you to retire' self-assessor.

This Guide is written by Retirement Specialist Dave Sinclair supported by members of the LaterLife team. As well as writing on retirement matters Dave is Training Director at LaterLife and responsible for the content and continuous improvement of LaterLife's Retirement Courses.
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