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In 1991 Billy and Akaisha Kaderli retired at the age of 38. Now, into their 3rd decade of this financially independent lifestyle, they invite you to take advantage of their wisdom and experience.

The Emotional Component of Retirement

Billy and Akaisha Kaderli

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Having fun on a lancha, crossing Lake Atitlan, Guatemala

Retirement is more of a process than one single event. We do not wake up on our 65th birthday automatically retired.

Books abound on how to set our financies in order and what percentages of certain investments we need in order to prepare adequately. This focus on dollars and cents is necessary, but how do we measure motivation, purpose, or life satisfaction?

Integral but often overlooked

The emotional component of retirement is often omitted in constructing this life-changing occasion. How do we communicate to our families that we want something different out of life? If we've been the fiscal cushion for our children (and perhaps now, grandchildren), to what extent do we modify that in order to gain more mobility or freedom? Do we maintain a household because we have pets? Do we keep a five-bedroom home just in case the kids want to visit? If we do end up selling the family dwelling, where will we celebrate the holidays? And how much care will our aging parents need?

Questions about balancing our responsibilities with the desire for a different life can set us back on our heels. It can be disorienting to find a way to be productively engaged and develop a new identity -- one not defined by our careers. Some people are not prepared for this change.

Service opportunities, civic involvement, or pursuing a lifelong passion can offer us new ways of relating to the world, but sometimes the waters can be choppy.

 

A new concept of "retirement"

Boomers are healthier and more educated, active, and diverse in interests than preceding generations. We also have more opportunities to contribute and connect in fellowship. We're transforming the face of retirement in many ways.

Our changing perspectives have spawned classes, coaching sessions, and support groups all over the country. Community colleges, nonprofit organizations, private foundations, alumni associations, human resource departments, career counseling centers, civic leadership programs, and online retirement forums are all places that offer guidance or programs linking us with others of like mind. They can help us sort through our emotions, clarify our visions, get us in touch with other resources, and assist us in developing practical plans of action. Exchanging ideas with others can open us up to a new future.

This is a period in life where many are dealing with the unknown. But youíve faced times of uncertainty before and survived. This is a strengthening point to remember.

Some friends of ours sold the accounting firm they ran for decades and bought a ranch. They now raise horses and grow grapes to make their own wine. At the local farmers' market, you can see them selling their organic vegetables and blue-ribbon boutique salsas. Friends like these can also be inspirational.

Take action

The point we are trying to make is to view this time of your lives as an asset. It doesn't have to be the winding down of your value. Rather itís a new episode of contribution in your personal story. Dream, discover, and plan for the years ahead in this truly exciting time of life.

Here are some suggestions on what you can do:

 

Make a list of all the things you want to learn, places you want to visit, and hobbies you want to pursue using your new found freedom.

Enumerate your strengths. How can you be productive and contribute to the world or your neighborhood going forward?

Have fun imagining future possibilities with the help of your spouse and other family members, if they are affected. Do you know how to entertain yourself? Or do you prefer more structure?

Speak with others farther along the retirement path and check community associations for ideas, throwing all potential choices into the ring for consideration.

Explore your options. Try on different hats. Replace the emotion of fear with a sense of fun and adventure.

Itís not always achieving the ďmagic numberĒ that creates a satisfying retirement. There is a lot more to the equation than finance.

Don't let anyone steal your dreams!

 

 

About the Authors

 
Billy and Akaisha Kaderli are recognized retirement experts and internationally published authors on topics of finance, medical tourism and world travel. With the wealth of information they share on their award winning website RetireEarlyLifestyle.com, they have been helping people achieve their own retirement dreams since 1991. They wrote the popular books, The Adventurerís Guide to Early Retirement and Your Retirement Dream IS Possible available on their website bookstore or on Amazon.com.

Billy and Akaisha continue to journal and photograph their world travels.

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