Don’t Wait To Retire From Life, Enjoy It All!
Retiring is stupid and puts a negative slant on what can be a wonderful journey! When I was a young man, I would overhear grownups talking about retirement. Some would say they couldn’t wait to reach retirement age (at that time 65). Some dreamed of just relaxing and doing nothing, others dreamed of working on hobbies like old cars or wood-working and a few even dreamed of traveling to places they had always wanted to go to but hadn’t. The one thing they all had in common is putting their happiness and fun off until they were 65 or older! Don’t wait to retire from life, enjoy it all while you go!
As I grew into adulthood and started to do a little research, I began to see that people who worked hard and waited to enjoy life in their later years, often didn’t get to. Many passed on before they were able to fulfill their dreams. Many ended up with little to no resources and were unable to pursue their future goals. Many more couldn’t even maintain their adult lifestyle and retirement turned out to be anything but their “Golden Years”. Research currently shows that almost half of the people reaching retirement age expect their standard of living to fall significantly. What I learned through research about retirement is that there are no guarantees. Even people who had invested wisely still sometimes ended up with less than they wanted or needed to enjoy their “retirement”!
Through years of looking into it, I discovered that putting the happiness possible in life off to the end of life is most often not a great idea. Even those fortunate few who do end up fully prepared for their retirement financially, may not have the health to enjoy it. So how do you prepare to guarantee you have a happy retirement?
First, you never retire! You focus on living the life you want… all of your life; not just the last few years of it! Happier people live longer! To ensure you enjoy your life you begin as soon as you become able. Find your passion, what makes you feel good. What activity would you do every day happily, even if no one was paying you to do it? For me it’s training and developing people with the professional and leadership skills that will make certain they are able to get what they want out of life. Once we find our passion and begin earning money that way, the next step is to consciously plan for the type of lifestyle you want. You compute how much a year you need to live to that standard of life. Then you determine what you need to do to build that level of income. Then of course, you do what is necessary! A large part will be protecting yourself financially and investing wisely from a young age.
One necessity many people often overlook is finding a good attorney and building a relationship with them long before you ever need them. There are challenges many of us face in our society where knowing and having a relationship with a competent attorney can make an enormous difference financially! If they are a really good and well connected attorney then it will make an even a bigger difference! We often face challenges like:
- Starting a business
- Tax issues
- Government issues
- Insurance issues, Etc.
These are challenges that when you are backed by a sound attorney, can greatly change the outcome of the situation in your favor.
A second area to give attention to as young as possible is protecting your assets. When we are young we often do not think of that older car we start out with or the hand me down furniture as our assets. They are though! They are usually paid for so we can spend our precious assets that we earn on other vital essentials and allowing us to invest usually precious little to start but then more as time goes on. The key is to set goals on what we want out of life and not to put them off for years and decades down the road that we are never guaranteed. Another key is to create the quality of life you want starting at the outset.
Part of being financially sound is to ensure that you carry the right insurance coverage on your assets at the right points in your life. You want enough insurance to protect your assets but not enough to over insure and waste money on overly expensive premiums. You also do not want to under insure your property so that in the case of an unfortunate event, you would not have enough to replace the assets you had, at the very least. A great example is rental property. If rental property is going to be a good investment and finance some or part of your retirement, then it must be protected. It must be insured for the proper amount and your renters must insure their own property.
Finally, besides finding the right attorney and building a relationship young you also want to find and befriend an investment or financial planning professional. This is a person you must know is competent and well-versed in what they do and the decisions they make with your investments as well as the advice they share. You must be able to trust this person and they must be someone who will listen to your goals not push their beliefs on life off on you. This is a person who needs to be committed to helping you create your life enjoyment plan. You want them and you to look at your direction and efforts as your path through enjoying your life not a retirement plan where you put your enjoyment off until the last years of your life! To create, maintain and ensure you have the assistance you need, build these relationships early and ensure you have an:
- Insurance agent
- Financial planner
Throughout your life. You cannot start too soon. It’s never too late to begin. The key is planning and creating a happy life but not focusing on waiting to start that happiness at the twilight of your years!