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What is retirement?

Retirement now offers  a whole new phase of life.  Huge opportunities await people.  A chance to redirect your life, to create new focus and meaning. Retirement as a concept is changing.  No longer is it an ‘ending’ it is now considered to be a new beginning. 

In the past, retirement was about saying goodbye to paid employment and relaxing, slowing down and having a life of ‘leisure’.  You became a 'pensioner'. No more stress – and no more excitement, achievement, energy or personal growth.  All very well for five years or so before the funeral plan was activated.

Is that what you want?  To withdraw and retreat from life?  No  purpose or new experiences? Now, with increased life expectancy, this period of life may go on for over 30 years so surely you want some meaning and excitement in life!

Back in 1951 there were only 200,000 New Zealanders over the age of 65.  By 2034 it will 21% of the population - over one million people.  Of these, nearly 180,000 will be aged over 85!

The problem is, there is no blueprint for retirement  You will not be doing 'retirement' in the same as your parents did or your grandparents.

If you’re getting close to retirement age and you don’t know what you’re going to do, treat it as a worrying sign. Don’t assume it’s going to be OK and that it’s all going to work out.

Having a plan, and a design, for retirement  provides peace of mind, it turns the unknown into the known.  Be proactive and design and plan the retirement YOU want.

Retirement is a gift.  Done properly it can provide so many opportunities - new experiences, friendships, time with family, more fun and meaning.

Above all, no regrets.

Why would you bother to plan for retirement?

Most people enter retirement with very little planning other than possibly considering the money side of it. Having a financial plan is important, but so is having a plan to stay engaged and productive. Aging well and aging gracefully need to be part of the life-plan.

Like any other phase in life, ‘retirement’ needs planning for and careful preparation. It involves transition and change.  Leaving full time work with no goals, plans or preparation is a recipe for disaster.  Once the novelty has worn off of not going to work, what will you do to replace the sense of purpose, challenge, belonging, contribution and connection you got from work?  How will you cope with the psychological change required, the lack lack of structure to your days and weeks? 

YOU can decide what you are going to do and achieve, how you will structure your time, who you will interact with and what you will prioritise. It all sounds fantastic, but without some prior thought this can be daunting.

This is a fabulous opportunity to do some introspection and clarify what really matters to you.  To do an 'audit' of your values, skills, motivators and start designing the life you want.

So, how ready are you for retirement and what is going to provide you purpose and meaning once you retire?

Start designing your retirement NOW - give yourself the gift of the best retirement possible!

Retirement Choices offers a 3-part process:


Designing - getting clear on what your ideal retirement life is going to look and feel like - your values, what's important to you,  In effect it is about setting the direction you want your life to go, your "True North".  This is about the things YOU want to do, little things, big thing - the stuff that provides meaning and purpose....put another way, the things you will regret if you don't do or experience them.

Planning - setting goals and actions, your 'bucket list'.  It also involves identifying any risks and putting thought into managing them so they don't become a constant niggling worry.

Doing - and then it is LIVING it!  Putting the plan into action and making memorable moments, getting the the most of these extra years

One-on-one coaching and workshops

You can opt for a series of one-on-one coaching sessions - for you or you and your partner, or you can attend a workshop.  The coaching sessions will be customised for you, helping you test your beliefs, clarify your values and priorities and establish both your retirement design and plan.

Alternatively, the "Age with Attitude" workshop provides an opportunity for you to work thought the designing and planning stages with other people.  Run over a day the workshop is a popular option for organisations.

In both cases, follow-up coaching sessions are available if you need an extra boost in the 'doing it' stage.

Please browse through my website and contact me if you have any questions or want to book an appointment for coaching or a workshop.

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Phone: 021 1698080 North Canterbury New Zealand

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