What makes people happy during retirement? Research shows that while financial security isn’t the most important thing, it’s near the top of most retirees’ lists. But it’s also important to think about what your life after full-time work will be like. Do you have social connections with whom you can share good stories and reach out to in times of need? Do you have enough outside interests, from hobbies to volunteering to keep you occupied? Do you have a plan B, such as thinking about part-time jobs that might interest you if you miss working? It’s important to think these things through because research also shows that unhappy retirees often feel that they no longer have a purpose in life or haven’t given enough thought about what they’re retiring into, rather than what they’re retiring from. In terms of financial security, happier retirees know how much they need to save to live relatively comfortably. They’ve paid off their mortgage or are close to doing so. And, they have several sources of income to rely on. A fee-only, fiduciary financial planner can help you figure out the financial aspects of retirement, but you may also want to seek out the services of other professionals who can help you anticipate the emotional aspects of retirement.
For further research:
- Next Avenue, Who the Happiest Retirees and Most Unhappy Retirees Are
- Wes Moss, What the Happiest Retirees Know: 10 Habits for a Healthy, Secure, and Joyful Life
- Tony Hixon, Retirement Stepping Stones: Find Meaning, Live with Purpose, and Leave a Legacy
- Wessmoss.com: Take the Core Pursuit Finder Quiz to find new activities