Retirement Decisions

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As one of the so-called "baby boomers", we are nearing retirement. In fact, there are three people in my office that I work with who are taking early retirement. Almost on a daily basis, I hear them talking about how excited they are to be retired, how much they will live off of, and what they will be doing.

I thought having an empty nest was quite a difficult adjustment. Now, faced with retirement, I can see that it takes a lot of planning and can get pretty complicated.

Deciding on a Place to Live

We have been living in Hawaii now for twenty years. When we moved here, we had our children with us, and then one by one they have married and moved off the island. I really miss them and my grandchildren. My husband is from Tonga, and he gets homesick for his homeland. It would not be such a good idea for us to split up in retirement, so we have a decision to make. We would love to stay in Hawaii, but it is very expensive here, and we are not sure if our financial situation in retirement will support living here. Some of our children hope that we stay here, because who doesn't like to vacation in Hawaii? We love the climate here, and where our children live, there are four seasons. I love the spring and fall, but winter can be very harsh. It would be perfect if we could have a place here for the winter and another in the mainland, but for us, it is not practical. Decisions, decisions.....

Deciding When to Retire

We were offered an early retirement package. After careful consideration, we decided we would wait until the magical age of 66 to get the full retirement benefits. We also asked if the place we work offers a pension. We considered how long we have been at our current job. This can affect your benefits. Also, if you have been active in a 401(k) and whether or not your company has matched or contributed also. We sought the help of a financial advisor to see if our Social Security, pension, savings, and investments, would support us well into our so-called "golden years".

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Deciding about Health Coverage

We attended a seminar regarding retirement. It was pretty depressing, especially when it comes to talking about Medical needs of the elderly. Currently we have partial coverage through our employer. We were told to apply for Medicare, but that will definitely not be enough. It was suggested that we get a supplemental policy for prescription, dental and optical needs. Finding affordable health insurance can be a challenge. It is important to have top-quality health care. Can we afford it?

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Deciding What to Do When We Retire

I am sure it will be nice not to have to be to work at the same time each morning and have almost our whole lives revolving around our employment when we retire. I'm sure it will take a while to get used to retirement. What could we do so we don't drive each other crazy? I could go to the gym and work on being the hottest grandma in town, but that will get tiring after a while. I would love to spend more of my time with my grandchildren, but I don't think I could handle being a full-time babysitter. There are many hobbies I enjoy, like painting, crafts, gardening, geneology, and writing. The great thing about retirement is you don't "have to" do anything if you don't want. You can sit down and plan out your day, but if you don't get it all done, it is fine. I could challenge myself to do something I haven't done before, or just stick with the familiar. I would enjoy going through all my things and getting rid of some, and finishing things I started that I never finished. I used to love to travel, but restless leg syndrome and insomnia has made it less enjoyable. Some people need structure, while others prefer randomness. Actually my husband is random and I need structure, so not sure how that will pan out. I have heard the best thing to do when you retire is to volunteer your services. We hope to go on a mission if our health is okay.

Things you could do when you retire:

  • Rest
  • Relax
  • Recreate
  • Go to a museum
  • Family history
  • Antique Shopping
  • Watch Birds
  • Start a herb garden
  • Become a photographer
  • Volunteer
  • Take a class
  • Scrapbooking
  • Join a singing group
  • Look up old friends
  • Bike riding
  • Dance
  • Have fun!

Identify one thing in your life that you are definitely passionate about (besides your husband or grandchildren), but that makes you feel like a "ten" (with 10 being the best and zero being the worst). Then see if you are able to feel like a "ten" again by engaging in activities that you once enjoyed.

Retirement is wonderful. It's doing nothing without worrying about getting caught at it.
— Gene Perret

I retired early for health reasons — my company was sick of me and I was sick of them.
— Unknown wise person

Retired: Just have to do what the voices in my wife's head tell me.
— Writing on a Retirement T-Shirt

A retired husband is often a wife's full-time job.
— Ella Harris

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Comments 12 comments

elayne001 profile image

elayne001 4 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

Haha! Your grandfather is pretty funny! I'm sure we will find joy being with all our kids and grandkids when we retire, if we make it!


LianaK profile image

LianaK 4 years ago

Thanks for your thoughtful hub! I hope you will find joy in your retirement. My grandfather once said, retirement is not about ceasing to work, but rather--being tired again :). Love it.


LadyFiddler profile image

LadyFiddler 4 years ago from Somewhere in the West

You are most welcome my dear elayne ;)


elayne001 profile image

elayne001 4 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

I enjoyed your thoughts, LadyFiddler. So true that we should enjoy our last years on earth, and what better time to get close with the Lord and feel at peace. Thank you!


LadyFiddler profile image

LadyFiddler 4 years ago from Somewhere in the West

Hi Hi

Retirement is really planning ahead though no one knows about the future but GOD.

After working your whole life must think about something enjoyable to do, go on a trip atleast once a year, visits friends and family you haven't in a long time. Do something special. Many people work and work and save all their monies for their children. That is wrong you work for it why don't you enjoy it before you die,

Most important you will have enough time to have fellowship with the Lord.

Have a bless day ;)


elayne001 profile image

elayne001 4 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

Thank you The Finance Hub. I will check out your hubs. Sounds like you might know a bit about financial topics.

Mahalo Glenn. Glad that you enjoyed my retirement hub. Still working on our retirement plans for next year. I appreciate your stopping by and for your positive comments.


Glenn Stok profile image

Glenn Stok 4 years ago from Long Island, NY

Deciding how to set up your retirement years is an important task. People who don't do that just become bored and then their health deteriorates. Keeping active is very important.

You addressed a lot of important issues that need to be considered for retirement, such as health insurance, finances and where to settle down. You did a great job on all that.

As for deciding what to do going forward, I especially like how you said to identify one thing in your life that you are passionate about. That covers it well.


elayne001 profile image

elayne001 4 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

Good advice CASE1WORKER. Yes, hopefully we will have saved and invested enough to carry us thru to the end. Thank you for sharing.


CASE1WORKER profile image

CASE1WORKER 4 years ago from UNITED KINGDOM

I "retired" a couple of years ago but now back to work planning the real retirement- you do need as much money as you can find


elayne001 profile image

elayne001 4 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

@diogenes - you sound like my husband - he really doesn't want to retire, but for sure he will be doing something else soon.

Thank you leann2800 - that is so true. Hard to break old routines and start new ones.


leann2800 4 years ago

I love that you provided a list of things to do when retire. I see so many people who retire from work and then just work. After decades of doing nothing else, it really is hard for some to know what to do.


diogenes 4 years ago

Hi..Don't "retire," just do something else.

Bob

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