If you’re planning for retirement, you may be focused on the money aspect – running calculations to ensure you won’t outlive your money.

While that’s an essential aspect of retirement planning, it’s not the only item to consider.

Look beyond money when planning for retirement. Think about how you will spend your time when you’re not going to work every day.

Sure, you’ll travel the world with your spouse … but how will you spend your time when you’re not traveling?

Sure, you’ll improve your golf game … but how many rounds can you play before becoming bored?

Dig deeper into your feelings.

Will you miss work?

If you own your business or have a senior-level position at work, you may think you’re ready to be done with it and retire.

But most successful people discover an emptiness when they stop working.

They’ve always defined themselves through their work and are at a loss when they retire.

They miss interacting with others.

They miss making tough decisions.

They miss feeling needed.

They miss the routine stuff.

They miss the chaos.

How will you spend your time in retirement?

If retirement is five to ten years away, start exploring ways to replace your professional life.

Here are some ideas:

Explore becoming a board member for a nonprofit or for-profit organization.

Define your next career path (“encore career”) – maybe something in photography or organic farming.

Re-energize a past hobby – rebuilding classic cars or oil painting.

Return to school for an advanced degree or a degree in something new.

Also, consider gradually reducing your work hours over the next few years to ease into full-time retirement.  

Think of retirement as a new chapter in life. You can do whatever you want with your mental and physical health permitting.

There is no right way or wrong way to spend retirement.

The key is to find something which will work for you.

Stay PEF (positive, enthusiastic, and focused), and make 2023 your best year ever!

(Update to original post from August 31, 2017)


Niv Persaud, CFP®, CDFA®, RICP®, is a Managing Director at Transition Planning & Guidance, LLC. Life is more than money. It’s about living the lifestyle you want and can afford. For that reason, Niv consults with clients on money, life, and work. Her approach capitalizes on techniques she learned throughout her career, including as a management consultant, executive recruiter, and financial advisor. Her services include developing  comprehensive financial plans, divorce financial reviews, and retirement plans. Niv actively gives back to her community through her volunteer efforts. She believes in living life to the fullest by cherishing friendships, enjoying the beauty of nature and laughing often — even at herself. Her favorite quote is by Erma Bombeck, “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and could say ‘I used everything you gave me.’”