Retirement anymore seems just around the corner for us. Yikes! And because of certain life-style choices we’ve made, we’re starting to think they will be interesting years, to say the least. Not that we’ll be alone. It’s fairly common for folks to find themselves in reduced circumstances during retirement years.
And not only with reduced income. Old age and retirement, which eventually arrive despite any efforts to prohibit them, often bring many reductions. Reduced income, decreased energy and stamina, vanishing physical strength, and declining health.
So how can we best prepare for those years?
Thirty, even twenty years ago, we didn’t think about it much. Youth often believes itself to be invincible thinking old age will never get the best of them! And then 50 comes with its aches and pains. Perhaps high blood pressure or other age-induced ailments. And all of a sudden you realize, “I’m getting old!”
Well, since there is no avoiding it (short of death, that is), what can we do about it? These thoughts run through my mind lately. Which by the way, runs slower than before too. Although, thankfully, slow enough that I still manage to catch it, most of the time! 😉
Barely 60, hubby and I are not ready for pasture yet! But we do wonder where our youth and vigor went. And wonder too how we’ll make it financially during retirement years. So we’re trying to prepare now.
1. Learn to live on less income by cutting expenses now.
Many focus on financial savings, IRAs, or investments. But that takes money to start with, doesn’t it? (Not a viable option for us.) So we’re learning to live frugally and debt-free now to make our retirement income stretch, and hopefully put a bit aside. We try to eat out less now — because we’ve learned that we don’t miss things we never got used to having in the first place!
2. Downsize and declutter now, while you still have the energy, stamina, and strength to get rid of stuff!
A smaller home with less stuff is so much easier in so many ways! Less cleaning, dusting, and maintenance. Lower taxes, insurance, and energy costs. As we age it’s harder to keep up with everything. So I want few things, easy-care furnishings, and (for the most part) furniture I can move around by myself! And I certainly don’t need a bunch of unused stuff sitting around collecting dust. Or to move up and down our super steep tall stairs!
3. Safeguard your health now before it deteriorates too much.
Through clean eating (that good old Mediterranean diet!), proper rest, and physical activity, we find we feel better and keep excess weight off more easily. Plus from everything I’ve read that’s sure to prove helpful into our older years as well! And who wouldn’t want to get out and take walks in our gorgeous area?!!
I know we can’t prepare for everything. But I’m firmly convinced that these steps will help us deal with old-age reductions. And be able to live our older years with greater joy and energy!
What preparations are you making (or have made) for retirement years?
I’d love to hear your suggestions!
In plain weather, prepare for foul.Thomas Fuller