Three retirement assumptions that lead to mistakes

And the myth busters that explain why these assumptions are wrong:

  • It’s mainly about the money
  • It’s all about you and your needs
  • You already know the rules

And here are the myth busters that explain why these assumptions are wrong.

It’s not just about the money

You may know the old saying about the person on their death bed who rarely wishes they’d spent more time in the office. It’s their connection with family, friends and a higher purpose that are usually considered to be the greatest achievements.

Similarly with retirement, it’s not the amount of money that you have that defines life satisfaction.

It’s how you organise your days and weeks and years that will matter the most.

The psychological aspects of later life are well covered. Sadly, too few people consider how they will maintain purpose and continue to contribute.

And these are the people, who find, after leaving work, that they don’t really know who they are.

Any of the following three books are well worth the read if you feel this aspect of your retirement deserves more consideration:

The Second Mountain, David Brooks, Allen Lane, 2019

The Artists Way for Retirement, Julia Cameron, Hay House, 2010

Retirement Your Way, Judy Rafferty, self-published, 2019.

It’s not just about you

‘No man is an island’, wrote poet, John Donne.

No woman is either.

And this is as true a statement today as it was 400 years ago when it was first penned.

Without the social glue of work, it’s very easy to become isolated.

Particularly for those who are widowed.

And isolation, typified by a marked increase in loneliness and depression, can become a challenge that kills. It’s not to say that everyone should become a raving extrovert – merely that putting new hobbies, social connections, links to community, maybe even some volunteering projects in place, BEFORE you retire, can mean your transition from full-time work is far smoother.

Very few people know ALL the rules

Assuming you know every legal, financial, retirement income aspect of retirement is a BIG mistake.

This does not mean that you don’t know a lot. You have probably been actively reading and researching retirement living options for some years.

But as our financial advisers will attest, so many retirees don’t know what they don’t know. And many clients are genuinely (and pleasantly) surprised to learn of rules they either didn’t know about or learn of the ways the rules can be interpreted to maximise entitlements and/or income.

Don’t be that person who thinks they know it all. Be the money-smart one who isn’t afraid to ask the right questions.

Want to speak to an adviser to check your understanding of your entitlements?