5 Proven Strategies to Increase Retirement Happiness
Updated on Feb 14 2019
Retirement is not the jubilation many Americans expect. Instead, many are struggling for a multitude of reasons including lack of stimulation, socialization, purpose and financial well-being. Learn five tips to finding better happiness in retirement.
Retirement is something many of us dream about for years. We spend most of our adult lives planning for it, saving for it, dreaming of life after work. But for many, retirement is not living up to its expectations. A study from the Employee Benefits Research Institute (EBRI) found that less than 50 percent of current retirees would describe their retirement as “very satisfying”, down from 60 percent in 1998.
Top Tips for Finding Happiness in Retirement
So, how do you ensure that your dream retirement becomes a reality? Here are 5 simple and important tips for increasing happiness in retirement.
1. Realize it’s not all about money.
No doubt that financial planning and retirement planning are important and can help you find satisfaction in retirement. In fact, it can be very hard to enjoy retirement without having saved and invested. But, studies show that finances only affect retirement satisfaction to a certain point. After hitting a certain income level, additional wealth does not increase happiness. So, save, invest, plan for your retirement but know there is more to happiness in retirement than just having enough money.
2. Focus on well-being.
According to the survey from EBRI, 80 percent of people who rated their health as excellent were “very satisfied” with their retirement, compared to only 26% of people who said their health was “poor,” furthering the argument there is a strong connection between good health and successful finances. Focusing on well-being is a great contributor to finding happiness in retirement. Take up yoga, get in a daily run, start meditating. Whatever it is, finding the time to take care of yourself is an important factor in retirement.
3. Retire on your own terms.
You are more likely to be happier in retirement if you leave your job on your own terms, deciding for yourself when it’s time to make a change. Many people that are let go from their jobs later in life give up searching for a job and decide to retire, making retirement a source of negativity in their lives. Spend the time and money now investing in human capital - your education, experience, skills, credentials and training can bolster your resume and Are You Headed for a Successful and Secure Retirement?.
4. Set purposeful, meaningful and realistic goals.
The days of retirees spending their days playing golf and relaxing poolside are waning. Today’s retirees are looking for a way to make meaningful contributions to society and make a positive impact in their own lives. Setting purposeful, meaningful, and realistic financial and retirement goals can help you stay engaged in retirement and even though you may not be working for a paycheck, you still have goals and a purpose to work towards every day. Travel the world, write a book, run a marathon - retirement is yours for the taking!
5. Coordinate your retirement with your partner.
Tension and conflict can arise when one partner retires without considering the effects of retirement on a spouse. If one partner continues to work, lifestyles can be in conflict as one partner is still locked in to a 9-to-5 job and the other take up new hobbies and pursues lifelong interests. Make financial decisions with your partner and have open and honest discussions about what you want your retirement to look like - together.
What does your ideal retirement look like? What are the most important factors to your happiness in retirement? Design your dream retirement and then meet with a fiduciary financial advisor to ensure your finances can make those dreams a reality.
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