I began working full time at age 19.
I went back to college on and off during my full-time career and enjoyed being a wife, mom and active with friends, family and in the community. I was used to being active and getting things done.
I had dreamed of retiring at the age of 55 when I began my 24-year career at the local public agency from which I retired. I thought, “wouldn’t that be amazing?” “What if I could make that happen?” The topic of retirement always felt juicy to me, never as an ending but always as a fresh beginning. I enjoyed my career in human resources and finance, and I loved my job and my co-workers. Sure, some days were better than others.
I had participated in our employer matching contributions and deferred compensation plans knowing that the time to save is while working. At first, it seemed daunting deferring the funds during those early years.
Retirement seemed so far off in the future, yet I had an inner knowing I was on the right financial path.
In 2012, our family went through the most difficult year, physically. My mom suffered through another case of shingles, my husband, out of the blue at the age of 58, needed a mitral valve replacement that required open heart surgery, and my brother lost his short yet insidious battle with a brain tumor at the age of 51. Even as difficult as that year was, there were still so many miracles and evidence of so much love from friends, family, and Divine sources.
I consulted with a financial planner, and we discussed my goals, dreams, and desires. Your financial planner can do a “Monte Carlo” analysis that diagnoses the probability of your finances and lifestyle lasting until your passing.
This information was reassuring to me and gave me the confidence to move forward with planning my retirement.
My dreams and desires were to spend my days doing my soul’s work and spending time with friends and family. I wanted to be healthy, happy and a benefit to others. This became much more important and clear following the year 2012 with all its challenges. I had seen firsthand how quickly a loved one’s health can change and deteriorate. I wanted the opportunity to be able to embrace the gift of my family and friends in the here and now.
Helpful Things to Do While Still Working:
- Take advantage of any employer savings or matching programs and maximize your participation.
- Participate fully in your 401k or 457 plans.
- Put money in savings, your children’s or grandchildren’s college funds or investments first; set it up automatically for each pay period.
- Educate yourself by taking classes or reading about savings and retirement options.
- Talk with a financial planner.
- Dream about what you want retirement to look like for you.
- Accelerate paying off your mortgage; making an extra payment a year or paying biweekly saves years of payments.
My husband and I had talked about my pending retirement, and he supported me in moving forward with this big life-changing event. Our son was through college, and our mortgage was almost paid off. It felt like the perfect time for me to take the leap of faith and retire.
I submitted my letter of resignation according to plan. I was able to train my replacements before leaving. I felt so grateful to have had my career and felt like a vital part of the team until the end.
Retirement Income –
Do you have enough income to last the rest of your life? Please meet with your financial planner to ensure a secure future.
Health care premiums –
What insurance will you have and can you afford the costs?
What do you want to do and do you have enough money to do it?
How is your health and how do you want to live out the rest of your days?
Where do you want to live and can you afford it?
What are your sources and are they enough?
What will you do with yourself each day in retirement?
I am so grateful for the gift of retirement and the abundance of time that I can spend living my dreams and desires. My wish for you is that you, too, will know when the time is right for you to retire. May you have a long and happy retirement.
I have been blessed by doing my soul’s work in this wonderful time called retirement, have written three books about joy and created an angel card deck. I awake with joy each day and am so grateful. You can find my work on Amazon.