I want to share three lies that pre-retirees tell themselves that cause them to delay their retirement. Behind every lie there’s truth, which is why so many people believe these things. We’ll go over the three lies and then I’ll share what to do so you can break through them and feel confident in what you’re doing to make the best of your unique situation.
The First Lie
Lie number one will cause you to delay retirement, and it’s that, “Oh, I’ll just work one more year so I can save a bit more, and then retirement will be more secure.” While it is true that if you work an extra year, you’re gonna have a little bit more saved, but is working one more year really what you want to do? In the past, we’ve seen people lose their drive to work (depending on their career) when they get to a certain age. Maybe things start changing at work that they aren’t a fan of and they begin looking forward to other areas of their life that they would rather spend their time in, but they continue to work because they don’t feel 100% percent confident.
Then a year later, the story repeats itself. Every retirement plan will look better the more you earn, but what you need to do is actually look at the real numbers. Pull up a what-if retirement plan and actually test it to see what it would mean to retire sooner. Knowing that and seeing it is helpful because then you can decide if that money is really worth it.
You start to realize as you get older that time does not equal money. Time is infinitely greater than money. Don’t get me wrong – if you run the numbers and look at your retirement plan and you’re not close to being financially independent, then work may be a necessity.
The Second Lie
The second lie is one that might just be echoing in your back of mind: If I’m not working, will I still be as valuable? Throughout your career, you’ve been continually creating and providing value to others through your work, your clients or customers, your coworkers – whoever it may be that you’re helping, and that’s why work can be so fulfilling. However, when you get to this place of financial independence where you can now make work optional, one of the things that may hold you back is feeling like you have less significance in this next stage.
A way to break through this and find fulfillment is by taking some time to find what it is that you love to do; find out what your skills are. Even if you retire from the moneymaking activities, you can still use those skills you learned in your career and your life to continue helping people. Maybe that means becoming a mentor or giving advice. Regardless of what that looks like for you, don’t pack up your wisdom and all the things that you could do to help others and just put it on the shelf.
That’s what we’ve seen provide fulfillment for clients as they get into retirement, seeing as contribution is one of the three keys to a happy retirement. The other two are creativity and connection. These all come together to make up the three Cs to retirement.
The Third Lie
The third lie that stops people from retiring or delaying retirement is the idea or the fear that retirement will be boring. The only time I’ve seen this come true is if you spend zero time thinking about what you’re going to do in retirement. It’s those who just work with their head down all the way up until this date and once they’re done, they’re a little caught off guard. This also happens to people who have a job that they just do not like, and rather than thinking about what they’re retiring to, they’re only focused on what they’re running away from. Don’t just retire just from something, retire to something that you’re looking forward to.
Let’s not have that happen to you. And if you’re still working now, make sure that you invest time, invest time now to explore those three Cs that we talked about. What are the three Cs gonna be for you? That idea of contribution, connection and creativity. Maybe even think about purposely, uh, uh, doing them.
To recap, think about these 3 lies retirees tell themselves. Number one: I’ll just work one more year. Is that really true? Run the numbers and see what the dollars are. Number two: I won’t be as valuable anymore. That’s only true if you don’t plan. Decide on what the three C’s look like for you. Number three is: I’m going to be so bored. That’s not true either – there are so many people that are retiring well. Let’s learn from them.
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Disclosures: Securities offered through LaSalle St. Securities LLC (LSS), member FINRA/SIPC. Advisory services offered through LaSalle St. Investment Advisors LLC (LSIA), a Registered Investment Advisor. Streamline Financial Services is not affiliated with LSS or LSIA. LSS is affiliated with LSIA.