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Avoid an Unhappy Retirement: Episode 094

Hank Coleman on how to avoid an unhappy retirementI interviewed Hank Coleman on how we can avoid an unhappy retirement

Hank Coleman founded several popular personal finance websites such as Money Q&A, Own The Dollar, Military Money Might, The Dividend Pig, and many others.  He is a freelance writer. Hank focuses on personal finance topics such as savings, investing, retirement, and many other money topics. I asked Hank to come on the show to talk about his parents and how much they hated the reality of retirement.

It’s never too early to plan for retirement

Hank has never spoken with his parents about their retirement, however, as an only child, who visits often, he can see that their retirement isn’t as amazing as they thought it would be. His parents had a grandiose idea of what retirement would be like, but when reality set in, it wasn’t as good as the dream they envisioned.  I talk with him about his parents’ retirement over the past 10 years and what he thinks went wrong. For Hank, it was heartbreaking to watch.

So what are Hank’s tips on how to avoid an unhappy retirement?

  1. Make sure your spouse knows your retirement dream. Many husbands and wives don’t talk to each other about what they want to do during retirement. Maybe they don’t want to do anything at all. Having a successful retirement starts with communication.
  2. If you can, plan a mini-retirement before you retire. Hank recommends taking a few weeks off and act like you’re retired. Have you ever dreamt of writing a book during retirement? You may want to consider taking your idea for a spin. You’ll never know if you have what it takes to live the retirement of your dreams unless you try it out
  3. You need a plan for your retirement. Now isn’t the time to start winging it.  The key to a perfect retirement is to have a plan and share with your loved ones.
  4. Don’t be too firmly rooted in your plan. Be open to flexibility as situations and circumstances do change
  5. Before you retire, you should look at how much money you’ll need in retirement. There are several useful online calculators that can show you a quick view of what your retirement will look like.

Contact information for Hank: Email: hank@moneyqanda.com * Website: http://moneyqanda.com

This post about retirement and Retirement Lifestyle first appeared on http://RockYourRetirement.com

Stages of Life with Ted Carr: Episode 093

Stages of Life Image for Ted CarrTed came onto my show as a guest to talk about stages of life, namely the 6 stages of retirement. Mr. Carr is a podcaster himself, with the show, Retirement Journeys, which discusses similar topics as this show, but he also includes financial topics on his show.

In case you’re wondering, the stages of life (retirement life) include:

  • Pre-retirement
  • Retirement
  • Disenchantment
  • Reorientation
  • Retirement Routine
  • Termination of Retirement (death)

Ed was young (mid-50s) when he retired in 2010 from a biotech company in San Francisco.  Because so many people had asked him how he was able to retire so young he decided to take his story online.

Let’s look at some of these stages of life that Ted went through:

Pre-retirement:

This is the time while you are working that you are saving and investing for the time when you will be able to stop working.  Ted did a good job at this, or he wouldn’t have been able to retire in his mid-50s.  Many people don’t plan far enough in advance, for whatever reasons, and so the other stages of life become more difficult for them.  However, that’s not what the Rock your Retirement show is all about so we’ll let you reach out to your financial adviser for help with this.

Retirement:

This is fun for most, but can be the shortest stage of life (retirement life) for many.  That’s because it’s really only a day, a week, a month, or six.  A retirement date.  The retirement stage of life is the party.  You may go out to dinner with your work buddies.  Or you might have a cake on your last day of work.  The parties, balloons, and dinners have become a rite of passage for our actual retirement date.

It can be a second “honeymoon” where you hike, garden, bicycle or create art.  Many people read or catch up on their yard work.

Ted took the “honeymoon” path when he first retired, and he describes this in his blog:

“After I retired in May 2010, I took the “honeymoon” path. In Retirement Journeys, I refer to this as “Arriving in Retirement”, a bridge from work life to retirement life. My wife and I moved from the Bay Area to Arizona in June 2010. Our first few months were spent settling into a new house and community. We had many home improvement projects to work on. We returned to the Bay Area frequently. When I look back at our calendar, I am reminded of the variety of ways that we spent our free time. We attended financial seminars, concerts, car auctions, baseball games and community-based meetings. In May 2011 we bought hybrid bikes and began riding once or twice a week”.1 

But there is only so much hiking, gardening, and bicycling you can do. So that led Ted to the next stage of retirement:

Disenchantment:

This is the letdown stage of life.  The honey moon is over.  It’s when many retirees become depressed. They can feel lonely, bored, useless, and disillusioned.  When they were working, people returned their phone calls.  People respected them.  Now, in this stage, many feel disrespected.

It’s this stage of life that the Rock Your Retirement show tries to help out.

Ted went through this stage too, as we discussed in the interview.  In 2011 he started worrying about whether he had made the right decision.  He didn’t feel productive and started writing in his journal to vent. For many, when they hit this stage, marriage problems can ensue.And it was affecting Ted’s marriage.  So he  looked at some preemptive steps:

  1. Volunteer
  2. Work
  3. Meetup
  4. Deeper Confrontation

Because Ted had started the look inward in this stage of life, he was able to progress to the next stage of life called re-orientation.

Reorientation:

Not everyone gets to this stage.  In order to get through it, you need to re-examine your role in life.  You need to ask yourself what your new purpose in life is.  And you need to find out if you are still useful in some way.  Ted had to answer the question, “Who am I, now?”

Before he could answer that question, Ted took inventory of his life.  He needed to find out why he was so unhappy.  Was it missing his paycheck? Missing the actual work itself?  What was it?

In Ted’s case, he discovered that he had negative feelings toward his alcoholic father.  He read the book, Forgiveness is a Choice, by Robert D Enright. He worked through its exercises.

Ted started volunteering at a local museum.  It gave him purpose and responsibility.  This helped him ease into the next stage of life, retirement routine.

Retirement Routine:

Mr. Carr calls this “Retirement 2.0”  This is where you are living a comfortable and rewarding lifestyle.  It can mean a daily run, volunteer time, or whatever your daily routine is.  For Ted, it means working on his podcast, his blog, and his volunteer work.

Retirement Termination:

Thank goodness Ted hasn’t reached this stage, but he lives by the quote, “Dream as if you’ll live forever. Live as if you’ll die tomorrow.”  James Dean

Ted Carr can be reached at www.retirementjourneys.com

 

  1. The 6 Stages of Retirement – Retirement Journeys, The 6 Stages of Retirement, http://retirementjourneys.com/2015/07/the-6-stages-of-retirement/

How Senior Services Can Get You Your Heart’s Desire Ep 92

Image of Ellen Williamson, who talks about Senior ServicesEllen Williamson retired in 2007 after 36 years of Federal service with the Department of Defense.  She was also a professor for 15 years as a “jobby”.  I love this combination of hobby and job, or a hobby with pay!

Anyway, she continues to consult with firms interested in Federal Government Acquisition on an ad hoc basis.

Although she has varied interests, including travel, hiking, charity and cultural events, we spent most of our time talking about a senior services club she belongs to called GetOffYourRockers.org.

I took the liberty of going on the website to see what this senior services club was all about.  Here is a list of currently available activities:

  • Biking.  Every Monday
  • Bowling.  The second and fourth Thursdays
  • Camping
  • Chair Yoga
  • Charitable Work
  • Cultural Events
  • Foot Golf (I’d never heard of this before now!)
  • Golf
  • Hiking (once a month on Fridays)
  • Kayaking and Stand Up Paddle Boarding
  • Potlucks
  • Sailing
  • Skiing
  • Social Hours
  • Tennis
  • Travel
  • Ushering (volunteering at a theatre)
  • Walking (every evening)

If you can’t get your heart’s desire with GOYR, then you are a tough nut to crack for sure!

Not only does this senior services club help her get out and do what she likes to do, but it also helps her keep in touch with friends, and make new ones.

In addition, it provides support for people who are recently retired, or just thinking about it.  You can hang out with someone who’s already retired, and you can talk to someone who can help you recognize that retirement doesn’t have to be scary.

Ellen reminded me that change of any kind, including retirement, can take up to a year and a half to be OK with it.

We’ve had many guests say the same thing.  I think joining a club like this is a great way to go.

But what if your town doesn’t have a senior services club like GOYR?  You can start one of your own.  These days, Meetup makes it easy, and we’ve had other episodes that talk about Meetup. Go check them out and then start or join a club of your own.

This post about retirement and Retirement Lifestyle first appeared on http://RockYourRetirement.com

An Expert Interview About Senior Games…Ep 090

Alan Mindell running in the senior games.Alan was nicknamed “Motorbutt”.

How did Alan Mindell get his nickname?  After dancing for years, Alan started running.  He wound up with some injuries, but got into shape.  At age 76, Motorbutt runs three times a week.  How often do you run?  (I don’t run. Ever.)

He wanted to come on the show to talk about the Senior Games.

The Senior Games are San Diego’s (and other counties) answer to the Senior Olympics. They are 50 years old in 2017 and there is a wide list of sports that are covered.

These sports include Track & Field; Pickleball; Archery; and Ping Pong to name a few.  If you do a Google search, you can find a list of contests and sports.  In San Diego, for the 2017 games, there will be 25 sports, including individual and team sports such as softball, volleyball, and soccer.

Alan’s sport is the 400 meter. That’s once around the track.  He said that the coolest thing he ever saw was a 100 year old man who competed in the Pole Vault.  Because he was the only participant, he was able to set a world record.  Listen to the episode to hear how he did it…it’s pretty interesting!

And, if you are looking to make friends, it’s a great place to do that too!

Attend the monthly luncheon.  Check your local Senior Games to see what they offer.

Exercising is one of the best ways we know to stave off disease in our older years.  It’s one of the best ways to stay young and healthy.  Why not take that knowledge, along with some friendly competition, to keep in shape?

I asked Alan for his advice for someone who has never exercised before. He said to start slow. Spend a few weeks going “light”.  We at the Rock Your Retirement Show don’t give medical advice, except for this:  Before starting any exercise routine, see your physician.

After you get the OK, go out there and have some fun in the senior games!

Marriage Advice After Retirement: Episode 85

Lori Davis on Marriage Advice After RetirementLet’s face it, our spouses can get on our nerves! And once you retire, you’re gonna be spending even more glorious (or not so glorious) time together. In this episode, I talk with Lori Ann Davis on marriage advice after retirement.

Lori has over 28 years’ experience empowering individuals and couples to live richer, happier lives. I asked her to come on the show because she is the author of Unmasking Secrets to Unstoppable Relationships: How to Find, Keep and Renew Love and Passion in Your Life.

You want a marriage that is not only surviving but is actually thriving.

According to Lori, just because you don’t fight and your marriage seems OK, it doesn’t necessarily mean it is. She gives some great marriage advice after retirement.

Key Elements for working on your marriage (and Lori says yes, you have to work on your marriage all the time) 

  • Constantly reconnect with each other
  • Be interested
  • Get to know them on a deeper level
  • Make sure you are spending enough time together
  • Talk about your expectations for this phase of your life
  • Discuss your dreams and interests

The Do’s and Don’ts

DO:

  • Discover who your spouse is
  • Date each other
  • Remember why you chose each other

DON’T

  • Spend 24/7 together
  • Rush into anything if you have grown apart
  • Spend zero amount of time together

What do you do if you have grown apart?

  • Sit down and start dating each other again
  • Look for the positives and the good things
  • Renew the passion and intimacy
  • Flirt
  • Sit next to each other
  • Stop for a kissing break
  • Entice
  • Hold hands
  • Leave a flirty message on the pillow or sent a flirtatious text
  • Make out and be playful

Lori and I also talk about when it’s time to get help for your relationship whether it is a counselor or a coach. Lori says the sooner you get help the better and don’t wait until you have given up.

Should you give marriage advice to a friend if they ask for it? Comment below if you have any thoughts on this subject.

Book:  Unmasking Secrets to Unstoppable Relationships: How to Find, Keep and Renew Love and Passion in Your Life.

Contact information: www.lorianndavis.com

This post about retirement and Retirement Lifestyle first appeared on http://RockYourRetirement.com