Advice matters
Navigating the emotional aspects of retirement planning

When you imagine your retirement, you might picture yourself enjoying cocktails on a beach somewhere, or spending time relaxing with family and friends.

But while many people have visions of what their ideal retirement might look like, actually making the transition can sometimes be more challenging than expected. Depending on your relationship with your work, giving up employment – whether it’s for someone else or working for yourself – can sometimes be quite a daunting prospect.

So, while you’re working through the financial side of your retirement plan, it can be helpful to think about the emotional aspects, too. Here are a few things that could help with the change.

Talk to people you love

It can help to start the discussions with your loved ones about your plans early. If you have a spouse, you may want to make sure that you’re on the same page about what you want from retirement. Do you share the same goals around things like travel and the amount of time you’ll spend with family?

Talking about your plans can help others know what you are expecting and what they can do to help. You could also talk to people who’ve retired recently about what the experience has been like for them.

Make the transition smooth

Retirement doesn’t have to be an all-or-nothing proposition. If you’re thinking about stepping back from work before too long, you could consider a staged exit. You might go part-time for a while, or work as a freelancer or consultant. This gives you time to build up other activities and interests outside work.

Don’t plan to cut connections entirely

You don’t have to become solitary because you’re retired. If you’re the type of person who thrives on doing things with and for other people, you could seek out opportunities in your community to put your skills to use. Perhaps that’s work for a non-profit or volunteering.

Focus on the positives

If you don’t view your retirement as “giving up” something as much as gaining something else, you’ll likely feel a lot better about the process. You might find it effective to focus on the things you’ll be able to do, or the time you’ll have to yourself, rather than the world that you’re stepping back from. Acknowledge any mixed feelings that you have – change can be difficult – but focus on what is opening up for you.

Have a plan

For some people, it’s the lack of structure that can be a bit daunting. If you know you like routine and purpose, you might want to set some goals for things you want to achieve in the short and medium-term. These could be things you set out to accomplish on your own or with your spouse and family.

Seek guidance

In much the same way that you have a financial planner help you get your money life straight for retirement, a professional can offer guidance on how to make the emotional transition to retirement.

Like to talk?

If you’re getting nearer to retirement and want to make sure your plans are on track, get in touch. Here at SHARE, we can help you ensure that your financial plans are in sync with the rest of your life. Drop us a line or give us a call.

Disclaimer: Please note that the content provided in this article is intended as an overview and as general information only. While care is taken to ensure accuracy and reliability, the information provided is subject to continuous change and may not reflect current developments or address your situation. Before making any decisions based on the information provided in this article, please use your discretion and seek independent guidance.