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Retiring is a big decision that can encompass a number of different factors. Retiring can mean a huge change in your status, as well as your financial condition. Some people look forward to retirement as a time to enjoy pursuits other than work. Others find themselves at loose ends and unable to adjust. Determining the right time for retirement is a very individual decision that requires thought, preparation and research.
Define What Retirement Means To You
Many people spend their lives thinking about what they will do during their retirement years. They are avid golfers, tennis-players, travelers and volunteers. They look to retirement as a period of having more free time for these activities. Other people think about retirement as a time to spend more time with family. Still others think of retirement as a time to start a new business or learn new skills. Whatever your thoughts about the free time that retirement will bring, recognize that these activities may require additional costs. If you can plan ahead for your retirement needs, you will have a better chance at making it a time of greater opportunity.
Expect to need at least 12 times your final annual pay for retirement. Of course, you will need to figure in any pension amounts and other sources of income. Under the American Social Security pension plan, if you choose to retire at age 62, you will receive less than if you had waited until age 67 and significantly less than if you had waited until age 70.
The state of your health should be a significant factor in deciding when to retire. You may have a major illness such as diabetes, cancer or heart disease that requires continuous medical supervision. Having adequate health insurance coverage may mean you should continue to work until government healthcare is available. Conversely, if you are eligible for coverage and find full-time employment too physically taxing, it may be advisable to retire so that you can get more rest and have more time to concentrate on improving your health condition.
Ability To Adapt To Changes
Some people, generally men, use their work to define themselves. The lack of employment can mean a loss of self-image and can lead to depression. Only you can determine how much your work status means to you. It may be that part-time employment or volunteer work is required for a happy retirement.
Partial retirement can be a good solution for people who do not feel ready to completely leave the workforce. Some people may start a new business during their retirement years. This solution can give them the flexibility to set shorter hours, as well as have more income during their later years.
The Down Side of Retirement
Retirement is not always a good choice for some people. Many people find the loss of mental stimulation can have a negative effect on their brain function and mood. They may be the people who have not cultivated hobbies outside of their work life. Early retirement means that the money you have saved must last longer. Pensions or other compensation may not be available for several years. You will no longer accrue retirement funds from your employment. In addition, you may have to pay for health insurance or other expenses that employment once covered.
Nisha represents a site called http://mha.org.uk/HomePage.aspx. She enjoys writing about dementia care and elderly health.