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Options for the Newly Retired

Date : May 10,2013
By : Arlene Chandler

Options for the Newly Retired: Your Life Has Only Just Begun

Retirement has a reputation of being the end of the road. However, it can be just the opposite; it can be the beginning of a great transformation. It’s all about how you utilize your time and resources. There are many ways to make your years after retirement some of the best and worthwhile yet by budgeting, planning, and enjoying yourself thoroughly.

Create a Budgeting Plan

Many people struggle when they first retire to successfully live off of their retirement funds. To create a successful budgeting plan, first become aware of where the spending goes. Start by spending as usual and then logging how much is spent on bills, food, gas, and recreational/miscellaneous activities. Then, look at your monthly retirement income and see what needs to be readjusted or cut down. Even simple things like biking to the store and eating in can save a significant amount of money in the long run. It’s a tedious task, but analyzing your expenses is what it takes to save money in the long run.

Think Ahead

As much as you hate to admit it, you are getting older. It’s important to think ahead and make the best decisions when it comes to your family. If you haven’t already invested in a life insurance plan, now is the time to do it. Life insurance is fairly priced, and it will help to make sure that your loved ones aren’t left with the burden of your debt. Deciding on life insurance takes some thinking and planning when it comes down to deciding who to choose as the beneficiary or what plan to get on. It’s best to talk with your loved ones, especially if you have a spouse.

Older married couples often suffer the most when one partner dies and isn’t covered by life insurance. Aside from the emotional pain, the financial struggle of only having one retirement fund to live on adds stress to an already difficult time. A life insurance payout can help make sure monetary needs of loved ones are taken care of.

Volunteer or Work Part Time

Many people who have retired get “cabin fever” after a few months. Volunteering or working part time is a good way to stay involved. Start working with a charity or a cause you’ve always believed in. This will help you feel connected and have a sense of purpose as well as providing something useful for the community. Whether it’s animal rights, community homeless prevention, or something on a more global level, it doesn’t matter. Find your inner activist.

Retirees also frequently find part time work. It’s a good way to surround yourself with people on a consistent basis while still maintaining a steady source of income. Remember, it is your retirement though, so don’t work too hard.

Pursue Your Passion

Most people aren’t lucky enough to have supported themselves their entire lives off of their passion. Even if you did like your job, it most likely wasn’t what you wanted to become growing up. It’s hard to pursue writing, music, painting, cooking, sewing, or anything else that interests you greatly when you have a full time job to commit to. Most likely your hobbies became harder and harder to squeeze in during the years especially if you raised a family on top of everything else. Find ways to reignite your inspiration, and keep busy doing what you love. You’ve earned it.

Plan a Trip

As cliché as it is, take a vacation with a loved one. Life is mean to be enjoyed, and half the fun is seeing things you’ve never seen before. Go someplace you’ve always dreamed of visiting. Even if you don’t have the means to take an exotic vacation, travel to the next town for a couple days. Try out some food you’ve always been too nervous to try, or go to a museum you’ve always been curious about. Experiencing a vacation without the duties of work in the back of your mind will take on a whole new level of enjoyment.

Cherish the Small Things

Take the time to appreciate who and what is around you. Spend time with your family and friends, and make sure they know how much you care for them. All the time in the world is yours, so try to notice things you’ve never looked at before. Spend time in nature, and really notice the different life forms surrounding you. The details you missed when you were always in a hurry will amaze you.

Stay Active

Plan to move around frequently after retirement. It will help keep you feeling healthy and young. It’s easy to get into a sedentary state without always having somewhere to be, but it’s important to get some physical activity in. Relaxing exercises such as early morning walks or beginning yoga will help you keep your body tuned up without being too strenuous.

Learn Something New

Try something out that you’ve always been curious about. Retirement is a great time to learn how to speak a new language, develop a new skill, or play an instrument. You can fully dedicate your time to what you want to learn instead of struggling to fit it in on the weekends or after work.

Retirement doesn’t have to be a sullen dead end. In fact, it can be an exciting and memorable time in your life where you get to experience all the things your working schedule wouldn’t allow for. It’s all about how you look at it; having an optimistic perspective will open up the possibilities for wonderful years ahead for you and your family.

Arlene Chandler is a freelance writer who focuses on preparing for the unexpected turns life can take. She currently writes about career advice and finance tips for the Suncorp life insurance page.,