Many of my clients nearing retirement talk a lot about life after work. But do you know what they often worry about most? Not just money – but how to wisely use their time, talent, influence, AND money in their retirement years.
A lot of them are between 55 and 65 years old, still working hard and investing for the future. For them, retirement success isn’t defined by their balance sheet. They want to “retire well”, and that is what I am committed to helping them do.
The first step in planning to “retire well” is to understand how you will spend your time, by reflecting on what matters most, and then planning a life built around these goals and priorities. A lot of people have a general idea about what they will do in retirement: find ways to stay productive, spend time with family, and volunteer to help their community. But often, a general plan isn’t enough.
Try this exercise: sit down and fill in a blank calendar of your ideal week in retirement.
Fill out every hour of every day, 24/7. Start with the obvious: sleep! Doesn’t that sound great? Next, your regular activities: hobbies, reading/reflection time, volunteer time, time with the grandkids, etc.
Most people quickly realize there will be large chunks of time every day that are empty white space. You may wonder, “what is wrong with that?” Nothing, at first. But after a while, a life defined by full-time leisure or a becoming a professional cable news watcher starts to fall flat.
Most people realize they want to be more productive. After all, they’ve spent a lifetime building careers and families. Golf may be fun when it’s an escape from work, but when it becomes your job, it may eventually lose its luster.
Use this exercise to think about how you will use your new calendar to be productive and spend time with, and on, the things that matter most to you.
If you want to start, here’s a link to a monthly calendar. Fill it out and see if you need to make a plan. And, of course, contact me at email@example.com if I can help.