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Baby Boomers And Retirement
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Baby Boomers And Retirement

Are we there yet!

How many times have you heard kids say this? Usually it’s when you’re travelling long distances, they’re bored, and you just want to get there. That’s how it can be with baby boomers and retirement plans. We work all of our lives, it seems, with the final goal of retirement luring us onward…until we’re there.

You've likely heard the expression, “It’s not the destination but the journey”. This should be true of our work lives as well so that we are living now and not for some distant “carrot”. But there are things that we can do to plan our retirements. You can start your plans early so that you are ready and not feeling lost or falling into a depression when you do retire. After all, we plan our careers, our lives, even our vacations throughout our adult years.

Here are some planning tips for retirement that you can plan for now:

1. Travel – Is this something you do now or have always wished you could do? Planning now will give you something (and somewhere) to look forward to. There are so many travel agencies, websites, and, yes, even blogs for Baby Boomers that are more than happy to help you in your planning. You can even blog about your adventures.

Check them out, do some searches, visit your closest travel agencies. There are even vacation packages catering to Baby Boomers travelling and even visiting solely with other Baby Boomers. I know my preference is to “hang out” with others around my age and with my likes and interests. As much as I adore my own kids and enjoy younger generations…I just don’t have their energy nor can I take on the travel opportunities or challenges that they are inclined to do.

2. Volunteer – Whether you are fully or semi-retired, volunteering is a great way to use your skills, expertise, and passions to do something or help someone else. Retirees are able to commit more time to volunteering but are also choosing to do this in a focused manner, dedicating themselves to a charity, need, or cause that they believe in.

Here’s something fun about volunteering: it doesn't have to be like anything you have ever done before. Want to try something totally new? Or have you always wanted to learn about something that you just didn't have time for while you were working? Just like we planned for our jobs, Baby Boomers can also plan for their volunteering. Everyone wants to have you volunteer with them but you will need to choose, and plan for, where you will give your time and commitment. This plan will then lead you to that charity, that agency, that cause to which you will devote yourself.

3. Retirement Community – “Whoa, hold on, I’m staying at home, it’s paid for. This is where my kids call home.” I fully understand and I suspect most of us will do this. But let’s also talk about retirement communities. Typically there are requirements (and once you read some of these you might be intrigued):

a. Age requirement – just like in the reference to travel above, there are some advantages to living in a community of folks our age. For one, we all move at relatively the same pace. Plus, kids and grand kids are allowed and, for the most part, looked upon with pleasure by your neighbors.

b. Can be fully or partially retired – in my mind, this makes for a great mix of people; some who are “stay-at-home” Boomers and others who still want or need to continue working and have that structure in their lives. I think this leads to a more vibrant and active community.

c. Shared services or amenities – this part is so great! “Many hands make light work”. These communities typically offer yard care, maintenance and other services with their fees. Even better, you've got great neighbors who are usually willing to help, even if it’s to watch your home while you travel to all those exotic places you've always wanted to go...and want to "write home about".

Focused retirement planning, knowing what you want to do with your retirement years. Why not plan for it now? Why not plan for it before it comes?

So often we here of someone who passes away shortly after they have retired because everything in their lives seems to be over…and retirement is often the final reality of that loss in value. This doesn't have to be if we but make plans now.

So what are your plans? Are you making any?

• Will you travel?

• Will you finally have the time to learn things you've always wanted to learn?

• Ever wanted to take up pen and paper and write a book? Although, with technology nowadays, you can even write a blog. I can show you how to blog if you are interested.

One more expression I’m sure you've heard, “Plan the work, work the plan”. Let’s amend that to, “Plan the retirement, and retire with a plan”. All the best to you and your retirement years.

Street Talk

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