People are living longer and longer lives, and their lives are more enjoyable and productive for longer. But we, in our mind's eye, often get stuck in the perception of frailty, incompetence, and dependence.
We really misunderstand how long we will live. Four out of ten of us underestimate our life expectancy by more than five years and an additional two in ten miss it by two to four years.*
The reality is that a 70-year-old is more likely to live to 90 than a 60-year-old!
For those of us who reach 65, half will live beyond 86.4 years!! One of every ten men reaching 65 will live to 93; one of every ten women reaching 65 will live to 96!! No wonder so many senior citizens are saying, “If I had any idea that I would live so long, I would have planned better.”
Now is the time to plan for the future--seriously plan. You can actually design and create for yourself a second life beyond just working, a new life of fulfillment and satisfaction, being and doing what you really want!
What can you do? Little things can make a big difference.
- A whole new life in retirement--it's a new set of choices!
- A new career, full-time or part-time.
- A new lifestyle; Clothing, look, daily routine, outlook, friends, hobbies, exercise, etc.
- A new home, city, state, even country!
Health: One of the biggest expense areas for seniors
- Food: Continue to adjust the quality and quantity the food you eat.
- Exercise: Continue to exercise (2.5 hours brisk exercise/week can add three to five years of life expectancy)
- Sleep: Get enough (probably more than you are getting)
- Stress: Reduce it, have fun
- Debt: Reduce, eliminate, don't add
- Fund your future: Utilize 401k (etc.), IRAs, etc.
- Use a financial advisor: studies show you'll double your returns
- Plan ahead: You can always adjust a plan and plan for disasters. It is difficult to adjust to a disaster after it happens
* "Key Findings and Issues; Longevity: 2011 Risks and Processes of Retirement Survey Report." Soa.org. Society of Actuaries, Jun. 2012; Carson, Sharon. "Longevity: How long is the journey through retirement?" Jpmorganfunds.com. J.P Morgan, RI/LONGEVITY, Sep. 2013.
Wow!! Shifting my thinking from dying at age 76 or 78 to living to 86.4 and beyond is a very different experience. That's another 10 years! That opens up all kinds of opportunities. Retirement is not just retirement--it's really a whole new life, a whole new set of choices, an entirely new freedom that we've never had before! It's exciting and huge.
What are your perspective and thoughts? Please share them with us below.
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