Defining Your Retirement Style

Loving life and full of energy or feeling sad and tired? Whether you are newly retired or close to it, no doubt you’ll want your retired life to be more like the former. Let’s face it. If you’re close to retirement age, there’s no time to waste. Chances are, you’ll be retired for at least 20 years, so why not enjoy it? Defining your retirement style is the first step towards making your retirement a happy one.

Retirement involves an incredible number of life changes. It’s so much more than just leaving the working world. It sounds so simple. Leave your job and everything falls into place. Here’s the thing: Change in one area causes a real domino effect. You’ll find that the changes associated with retiring affect all parts of your life and not just your employment status.  If you’re someone who hesitates to change, then retirement is going offer challenges as well as opportunities.

Here’s a quick introduction to figuring out your retirement style:

Finances

This is the first area most people think about when considering retirement. Can I afford it? If retirement was your choice, hopefully you are prepared. If retirement came sooner than expected, then you will have even more to consider. Regardless of your situation, figuring out where you want to spend your money in retirement is a huge part of knowing how much you’ll need.

Work

Yes, people often have a working retirement. Reducing your hours and continuing to  work a part-time schedule or finding a volunteer job are common lifestyle choices. As a result, whatever you chose to do will likely offer you more flexibility.  How you decide to spend your time either in a paid or unpaid capacity will take some thought and consideration.

Passions

Maybe you have something you’re passionate about doing or maybe you don’t. Regardless, you’ll find that doing something meaningful to you in retirement often becomes your personal goal. If you’re looking for that one big thing that calls to you, take time to explore a variety of interests and activities to find out just the right place to channel your energy.

Location

Empty-nest, downsizing, traveling and simple living are all considerations in retirement. Whether you stay in your current home or decide to move, you’ll think about just where you want live. Commute becomes less of a concern in retirement and is replaced by the relative locations of things like family, airports, health care or favorable climates.

Wellness

It’s likely that health and wellness factor heavily into your retirement plan. Many people look at this as the prime time to develop new eating habits and become more active. Making good decisions about health care coverage and how to best maintain your health take both research and evaluation. Hopefully you’ll have more time in retirement to figure out how to best live a healthy life.

Relationships

Will you spend more time with family? What about seeing friends more often? Developing new friendships and connecting with others is a significant factor in creating a happier retirement. Your workplace community will definitely change and it’s essential to find new ways to connect with people. In addition, you’ll ask yourself, just who do I really want to spend time with?

Leisure

Will your retirement leave you more leisure time? What will you do? What have you always wanted to do but couldn’t? Retirement generally offers plenty of time to pursue new hobbies and interests, so just what will you do?

How’s that for a list? Finally, are you thinking about defining your retirement style? There’s a lot to consider but you don’t need to get it figured out all at once. Just know life will change and you have the life experience and skills to deal with whatever comes next. You didn’t get to the age you are now without learning something along the way!


Whether you are dreaming about the day you can retire or are suddenly faced with unforeseen early retirement, putting together a retirement plan can be a powerful way to begin working towards your ideal retirement. Our practical guide to Creating Your Own Retirement Plan includes guidance, a template, and a completed sample plan. For personalized assistance and guidance, please contact us.

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