As you approach retirement, it's essential to consider ways to make this transition more enjoyable. A well-deserved holiday to kick off your retirement can provide a soothing start and offer a glimpse into the exciting times that lie ahead. Ricardo Teixeira, Chief Operating Officer for BDO Wealth Advisors, emphasizes the importance of planning a dream holiday around your retirement start date, combining financial prudence with relaxation.
Mitigate the Post-Retirement Blues
Retirees often find the first Monday after retirement to be one of the most challenging days of their lives. Regardless of the extensive retirement preparations made with loved ones and financial advisors, the initial days without work can be disorienting. Losing the professional identity, you once had as a doctor, engineer, or CEO might leave you staring at an empty weekly calendar, wondering how to fill your newfound free time. Without the familiar responsibilities of work, collaboration with colleagues, and provision for your family, you may even feel a loss of purpose.
While a spectacular holiday cannot eliminate these anxieties entirely, it can be the first step towards creating a retirement schedule filled with exciting experiences. By planning for upcoming activities, you give yourself something to look forward to. As you anticipate these events, you'll discover a growing enthusiasm that will prompt you to schedule more fulfilling endeavours. Before long, you'll find joy in filling smaller blocks of time with activities like sports, online learning, volunteer work, or short trips to visit friends and family.
Moreover, embarking on a significant holiday after retirement allows you to disconnect from your previous phase of life, engage in self-reflection, and start envisioning the future. You might even integrate your travel experiences into the fabric of your retirement schedule. For instance, if you develop a passion for a particular cuisine, you can take culinary classes upon returning home and transform mealtimes into mini-holidays. Exploring your destination on foot may inspire you to adopt walking or hiking as part of your morning routine.
Embrace Your Financial Freedom
Throughout our working lives, there are often things we yearn to do but continually postpone until "someday" due to professional and familial obligations. Unfortunately, many retirees find themselves perpetually deferring these dreams, fearing they might exhaust their financial resources. Regrettably, for too many South Africans, "someday" never arrives.
To truly make the most of your retirement, it is crucial to shift from a "saving" mindset to a "reward" mindset as early as possible. Struggling retirees can easily fall into monotonous routines, aimlessly navigating their homes until they eventually settle into the comfort of their couches each night. By planning a holiday, you can break free from this potential rut before it takes hold. As you grow more comfortable with responsible spending, you will begin to appreciate the possibilities that your diligent work has secured for your retirement. This newfound appreciation should inspire you to try new experiences and explore new destinations while you still have the freedom and ability to do so.
As you gradually transition into different phases of retirement, a lifestyle-based financial plan will serve as your guide, ensuring you can continue to lead a fulfilling life with the resources you have. Just as you've likely found throughout your life and career, working with a coach is often the most effective way to improve. Retirement is no exception. If you find yourself struggling with the transition, consider working with a Certified Financial Planner® skilled in retirement coaching. By embarking on that first bucket list holiday, you can embark on a fresh perspective and fully embrace the golden years ahead, cherishing the moments that lie beyond.