Broker Check

Your Retirement Journey

| January 03, 2018
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Just retired? This retirement model outlines the common phases many retirees experience. It was developed by a Professor of Gerontology named Robert Atchley, and he originally identified 7 stages. However, we have highlighted four of the most common below. Being aware of these typical stages may help ease your transition into retirement. 

The Retirement Phase – There are three different paths many take when entering retirement, and the Honeymoon route is the most common. 

·        The “honeymoon” route is GREAT to experience in the short run. Whether traveling, spending time with family or taking up new hobbies, retirees are living life to the fullest. 

·        The “immediate retirement route” is often experienced by those who had busy schedules beyond just work, and adding to that schedule with the extra free time feels like the natural thing to do.

·        The “rest and relaxation” path is a common one for those who had busy work schedules. Taking it easy becomes a big priority.

The Disenchantment Phase – In this phase you may start to re-evaluate your life and even doubt some of your retirement decisions. It’s not uncommon for retirees to have some regrets about possibly retiring too early and questioning whether they left too much on the table financially. When in this stage, you may want to consider making some adjustments to your routine which will bring you purpose and joy. This is a good time to start a journal, tracking your emotions and venting them all out on paper so you know what your emotional hurdles are. A little self-reflection and a good sense of humor can go a long way!

The Reorientation Phase –This phase is all about adjusting to your new “normal.” Creating new routines and new goals will accelerate the speed at which you adjust to and get comfortable with “the new normal.” These routines and goals will provide you with new things to feel passionate and ambitious about. You can even create a new budget plan for the fun activities you want to do in order to enjoy them without feeling stressed about spending. And, all of this combined will help set your mind at ease about the changes that have occurred and will help you establish a new sense of purpose. 

The Routine Phase – Your new daily schedule is set, new family boundaries are in place, new relationships are blossoming and your new identity is well on its way to being created. As this new retirement landscape becomes more familiar, you can truly start to relax and enjoy your golden years.

Note that the journey through the stages is unique to each individual. Some may spend a longer period of time in one phase and breeze through another, and some may skip a stage altogether. 

If you find yourself relating to one of these phases, rest assured what you’re experiencing is most likely normal and you’re on the right track! 

If you have any questions or concerns regarding your financial situation while living in retirement, please don't hesitate to give us a call.
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