For different people, a fulfilling and happy retirement can mean different things. It may mean spending more time with your family for you, or, perhaps, you envision yourself making regular visits to a golf course or starting a garden.

Of course, knowing how you can get to your retirement goals financially is important after you’ve determined what exactly will give you the peace of mind you need.

Here are the things you need when preparing for your retirement to help you get started:

1. The Definition Of Your Retirement

Again, knowing what you want to have in your life after retirement or how you want to live your retirement life is important. You probably have many ideas on how to spend your retirement, so it’s best to write your objectives down so that you can define your retirement more clearly. 

When writing your retirement objectives, list your most important goals first. Focus on specific ideas for now instead of focusing on budget. For instance, you can list walking tours of foreign countries or volunteering with kids at least one day a week.

So you can keep track of your goals, start a journal or create a scrapbook depicting what’s retirement for you. Try to limit your list to the top five objectives you have in mind. Note that it’s important to rule unnecessary expenses out. As you brainstorm, ensure that all financial needs are met. Your retirement becomes more tangible if you’re more descriptive. This will make each of your goals more attainable since it allows you to focus on a realistic set of objectives.

2. Knowledge Is Gold

More retirement security is achieved when making smarter retirement decisions. Retirement income can actually increase by around 30% if you make informed decisions in the different areas of retirement planning. That means your chances of improving retirement security increases if you invest time in learning your options. Of course, one of the most important areas of retirement planning are your investments. Fortunately, there are very helpful resources you can find online, like, that will educate you about retirement planning and investing in the new age.

You don’t really have to win the jackpot in the lottery; you just have to learn guaranteed lifetime income’s role, and learn about how to invest properly, choosing the right option with Medicare, and claiming Social Security, among others.

3. The Assets You Have

When taking stock of your assets, it’s important to also consider other nontraditional assets that could possibly help fund your retirement. You already know how much money you have in your bank account, how much you’re bringing home each month, and how much you got in your retirement account. But, what about the cars you’ve restored or antiques you collected?  Perhaps, you have a novel that’s half-written you want to finish, or you’re an accomplished pianist. It’s essential to note that many skills and hobbies can actually be turned into a real income source in your retirement years.

Take the time listing all the hobbies and skills you have. Include in the list all of your untraditional assets and your passions. If your list is small, don’t worry. Instead, start thinking about how those hobbies and skills can be morphed into money making endeavors.

4. Retirement Age

What many people don’t realize is that even just three additional months of work can generate the same increase in their income for retirement as saving one percentage of earnings for 30 years. That means you have to keep working as long as you can before finally retiring. Of course, it also means choosing a role with less stress even if it gives less income, avoiding a bad boss, changing your attitude towards work, and taking vacations, all for the purpose of avoiding burnout.

5. Social Security Claiming Age

Surely, you’ve already heard the advice that postponing Social Security is going to improve your retirement security. It’s true. Your decision when it comes to claiming Social Security is one of the most important retirement decisions you’ll make if you’re one of those retirees who depend on Social Security for nearly more than half of their total retirement income. For example, if the age for full retirement is 66, one will be receiving 76% more if they claim at age 70 instead of claiming at age 62.

6. Spending Levels Matter

If you want your resources to last longer, then, make an effort to reduce retirement spending. Some options you can consider include moving somewhere where there’s a lower cost of living, becoming a thriftier shopper, especially when grocery shopping, and/or only buying the stuff that mean much to you.

7. Retirement Accounts And Catch-Up Contributions

Maximize your retirement contributions whenever possible. Do it in every retirement plan you have, including IRAs and 401(k). Qualify for the maximum matching contribution your employer may offer by putting enough into your 401(k). Rules for catch-up contributions will let you set more than the usual contribution aside if you’re 50 years old or older at any given time during a calendar year.

8. Evaluating Your Health

Becoming as healthy as possible is essential in getting the most out of retirement and life in general. A little medical attention for preventive purposes can go a long way.

Make an appointment with a physician for regular checkups and preventive exams. At each schedule, work with your doctor on a plan you can follow for improving or maintaining your health. You shouldn’t consider healthy living as a chore. Exercise can be fun and there are many delicious foods that are both satisfying and healthy. That said, commit or recommit to exercising, eating healthy, and getting enough sleep.

In addition, books, puzzles, and brain games can help you stay mentally sharp. Also, maintain both your physical and mental health by staying in close contact with your family and friends. It may aid you in fighting off blues that may arise once you’re retired.

Final Thoughts

When it comes to retirement, planning carefully and setting realistic goals is imperative. To ensure that you have all the means to achieve and enjoy the sort of retirement life you want for yourself, start taking care of the things mentioned above as soon as possible. Proper retirement planning is definitely rewarding despite how challenging it can be.


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