When is the right time to retire after divorce?
I came from the generation that put work first. We worked hard and long hours, skipped meals, and kept our phones ready to answer the call. Now that the retirement age is rapidly approaching, we must face the decision of when to let it go.
I remember having the thoughts of, have I saved enough, am I prepared for this significant life change? Will I have enough income for those random shopping dates with the girls? What will I do now, and will my friends think less of me because I will be on a fixed income? Yes, these are the thoughts that go through our minds, but it is not the end of the world.
Let's unpack the planning process some. There will be the financial aspects of retiring to address, and that is significant. But have you addressed the mental and physical aspects? For example, in retirement, your schedule is your own, and you decide when you will do things. Have you planned for hobbies, activities, and travel? Are you purchasing the items you will need so that in the future to make those things come to life?
Some of my planning included purchasing a sewing machine and setting up a space for the activity. I also knew that I would want to garden, so I began to invest in equipment to help me with that goal. My point is planning for retirement is more than just saving money; it also means preparing to move, possibly downsizing, start new activities, and making new friends.
The key to it all is planning for the future. Don't wait until you are sick and unable to function before letting go of the forced work week. Plan and leave early enough to enjoy the rest of your life on your terms. If you want to spend your remaining years rocking on the front porch and drinking lemonade, that's your choice. Just plan now for the excellent model zip line or rocking chair.