From the moment we first enter the workforce, we are told to begin preparing for our retirement. Indeed, given today’s economic state and the spending and saving habits of Americans, the earlier we start saving for retirement, the more likely we are to continue along a path of stewardship and responsibility in order to enjoy our ‘golden’ years. In a society founded on the principles of hard work and capitalism, retirement is the ultimate goal—the ultimate mark of success. But when the time comes to end our professional lives, many people find themselves at a loss for what to do. They eventually pine for their old careers—after all, you can only play so much golf.
What should you do if you find yourself stagnating during retirement?
In a study performed by Bankers Life, researchers polled 300 retirees ages 55 to 75 about their lives in retirement and what they missed most and least about working. The one component most retirees missed was human interaction, with over 65 percent responding that they longed to connect with coworkers, friends, or students at work. Surprisingly enough, in comparison, only 15 percent of retirees missed the extra income from work. This unexpected statistic goes to show that the camaraderie and companionship of loved ones has so much more importance than material wealth. Those who are rich in friendship and love are more content in life than even the richest men and women in the world.
Ultimately, many retirees make the mistake of planning only for the financial aspects of retirement, and they neglect to plan on what activities and pursuits will bring them fulfillment. When we clock out for the final time, we may find ourselves with plenty of time and little to do. In planning for your own retirement, don’t just plan how much money you need to save, remember to plan how you’ll spend your time, as well. Here are a few questions to consider:
- When you’re not governed by an alarm clock, what is it that drives you to get up in the morning?
- What opportunities do you have to interact with friends and loved ones?
- What truly makes you happy?
- How do you keep your mind sharp and your body fit?
- What cause can you serve in order to be fulfilled?
While it’s not mandatory that you have these answers solidified when retirement is still a distant vision, it is important to start thinking about them more seriously as retirement approaches.
When you hang up the office attire for the last time, have a plan for growing in faith and love. There are many ministries and churches that will benefit from your wisdom and experience. Get involved in your parish as a volunteer, participate in Bible study, find a secular non-profit that needs your help, or dedicate yourself to a Ministry such as Compass that feeds your passion for stewardship. Just imagine what our parishes would look like if there were just ten people in each parish serving as full time volunteers.
Whatever you may choose to do, make sure it’s something that ignites a deep passion within you and brings you closer to God.
At any point along your journey toward financial freedom, Compass Catholic offers helpful tools and guidance to help you achieve fulfillment. Call us today at (844) 447-6263, or feel free to browse our website to learn more.