You know, the one that you have been incubating for the last 30 or so years in preparation for that special day-your retirement?
Or will someone else be enjoying the fruits of your hard work?
If you are like most of us you are spending more and more time working harder than you have ever before. With another GFC looming and billions being wiped off the share market day after day we can all be forcibly directed down the road of putting more and more things on the back burner or on that ever growing wish list that we never seem to get around to ticking off or leave until the time we are well into our retirement.
Are you spending less time on the things that really matter to you? Do you spend enough time on your health and on your interests and hobbies? If you’re not, you may not be around to do so.
The limiting factor in life is your health. If you are not in good nick or you are sick and chained to some hospital bed or you’re dead, you won’t be coming back from the grave to do any of the things that truly matter to you.
For a long time we have been told that retirement is the holy grail, the be-all and end-all, the ultimate goal for most of us to achieve successfully. So many of our financial planners have drummed this into us year after year:
“You need to plan for your retirement, you need to put as much as you can into the nest egg for that day- you’ve got to be well prepared”.
I am here to tell you that the worst thing that you can do is retire! Most people who retire,or rather, go on a permanent holiday don’t live long enough to enjoy their nest egg. Those who have neglected their health and their interests and have just concentrated on work and squirreling away as much money as they can into their nest egg have a high risk of death within 5 years of their retirement.
Rather than viewing our retirement as a life changing experience that takes us in a split second from being a productive valued worker to being on a permanent holiday, we should be trying to make a seamless and gradual transition where our life continues to be productive and is enjoyable.
Turn your hobby into your work
A friend of mine recently told me that he sat his21-year-old down for one of those father son talks to give him some great advice. He advised him to turn the things he loves, his interests and hobbies, into active income-producing work. So,if you can,turn your hobby and interests into your work. But if you are like me and you can’t turn your hobby into your work right now then allow the seamless process of your retirement to make your interests and hobbies your passion through your work in the latter active years.
Enjoy the present
It is important that we learn how to enjoy the present.Many of us are so busy working that we tend to focus only on what we can and will do in our retirement and how much better our lives will be in the future. As a result we forget to enjoy the moment we’re in now.
There is no rhyme or reason why we have to put things on hold and wait for the future when we are no longer working so that we can enjoy travel, our hobbies and all the other things we have on our wish list.
There is also no reason why we have to feel that after a certain age we are made to feel that we have little to offer society. It’s simply not true, we have much more to offer and we will.
The most important cog in our retirement is our health
If you have been looking after yourself (in body, mind and spirit), making sure that you have been having all your regular health checks along the way,maintaininga sound diet, keeping up the exercise andtaking time for relaxationthen there is no reason why you won’t be there to enjoy the trappings that come with a great retirement, one that is productive and that means you don’t stay in work that you don’t enjoy.
In our latter years we must, and will, work at the things that we are passionate about, taking that hobby or interest to the next level and turning it into a new income producing business.
Do the things you love right now
If you plan right then you don’t have to put things off until retirement especially if you are in good health. You can have an active income-producing retirement, so there is no reason why you can’t do some of the things you were planning to do in your retirement right now. If you love travel, playing golf, painting or whatever you desire take the time and make it happen right now.
Don’t look for excuses to put things off.It’s not good enough. You know the excuses. We’ve all used them before to justify our position for not taking action:
I just don’t have the time
If only I had more money
If only I didn’t have so many bills
……The list just goes on ….
The research supports that doing the things that we are passionate about and love in our younger and active years, means that we will live healthier, happier and more meaningful lives.
Take action right now
Don’t keep adding to the wish list; start right now. Make it a priority to do the things that you enjoy now. It will provide you with the right balance and give you the strength in both body, mind and spirit so you get to that nest egg in one piece and in the best condition to be there to spend your super.