How to Get the Most Out of Your Retirement 0


Whether you’re close to retirement age or not, the idea of life without work is an incredibly appealing prospect. However, if you want to get the most out of your retirement, it’s vital that you begin to think about what you want to take from it and how you can prepare for it.


Financially, there are a huge number of considerations to make, including savings, investments, pensions, funeral plans and wills, but you also need to think about how you can maximise your time and what kind of a life you want to live once you quit your job for good. Here we take a look at a few different ways you can get the most from your retirement.



What do you want from retirement?

One of the key ways of ensuring you get what you want out of your retirement is by taking the time to consider how you want to spend the time and what you want to do with it. If you don’t know what you want from life after work, how are you going to ensure you achieve your goals? Everyone desires something different from retirement – be it a peaceful few years at home enjoying your hobbies, travelling the world or ticking off items on your bucket list – so it makes sense that people will need to prepare in different ways too.


Plan ahead

Once you understand exactly what you want from retirement, you can begin to work out how to achieve your aims. This will involve asking a number of important questions. How large will savings need to be? How many more years do you expect to work? How long is your retirement likely to be? Are there any other important financial considerations, such as rent, a mortgage, health bills or family commitments, to consider? Once you’ve answered such questions, you’ll be in a better position to budget for a financially secure future that’s able to deliver those things you really desire.


Reduce expenditure

One important but often forgotten means of ensuring a happy retirement is minimising the cost of those expenditures associated with old age. While a lot of people don’t consider a funeral plan until they are well into retirement, there’s enormous savings to be made if you begin thinking about these things now. With funeral costs rising at a far higher rate than inflation, a plan like the Beyond Open Plan could drastically reduce the amount you pay out for your funeral. By thinking ahead and taking out a plan like this now, you freeze the cost of your funeral at today’s prices and could avoid paying three times as much in 10 to 15 years’ time.



Finally, getting the most out of your retirement necessitates a certain amount of prioritisation. Realistically, you’re not going to be able to do absolutely everything you want with your retirement, so it’s important that you begin to think about what’s really vital to your plans and what you can afford to drop. Remember that life is full of surprises, so you don’t want to overstretch your savings and potentially leave yourself open to financial uncertainty. It’s always a good idea to maintain some savings as security should things not turn out quite as you had planned.

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Why It’s Important to Set Goals in Later Life 0

set goals

Whether it’s writing your bucket list, looking after your physical fitness or simply getting those important jobs out of the way, setting goals is a vital component in planning for the future and ensuring that life meets your expectations.


This is particularly true as you get older. Not only do you have to think about the ways you would like to spend your retirement, there’s your health to maintain and important financial decisions, such as taking out a funeral plan to make. By setting goals in all aspects of your life, you give yourself a clearly defined objective to work towards and make achieving it that much easier. Here, we take a look at a few more reasons why it can be a good idea to set goals as you get older.

set goals in later life

Fresh perspective

Though most people focus on the benefits of working hard towards their goals, it’s also important to note the positive aspects inherent in the actual goal-setting process. By sitting down and taking the time to think about the areas of your life on which you would like to focus, where you would like to improve yourself and what things are important to you as an individual, you can often get a fresh perspective on how you’re living life and what can be changed. It’s all too easy to go through life without asking these difficult questions of yourself, so any opportunity to do so should be embraced.


Looking after your health

Whether you’re setting physical fitness goals or more general lifestyle goals, having a plan of action and knowing how you want to spend your time is incredibly important to remaining fit and healthy. While all physical exercise, no matter how gentle or intermittent it is, helps maintain healthy body functions, other hobbies, activities and excursions also help to ensure your mind gets a workout too.


Keep learning

As you get older, there’s often a tendency to slow down and begin to drop or stop activities and hobbies that you have maintained for many years. While there’s no problem with slowing down -it’s only natural as you age- it’s important to ensure that life doesn’t become a matter of sitting back and simply observing and reminiscing.


Such an attitude can often lead to a type of mentality that considers life already lived, with there being nothing left to strive for. No matter your age, this simply isn’t true. By setting goals and keeping motivated, you can stave off these unhelpful sensations and continue to live a fulfilling and purposeful life, and keep learning new things.


Making the most of your time

Setting goals in later life is all about making the most of your time and ensuring you do things that you feel are important and valuable.


For many people, retirement offers freedom from the 9-5 commitments of professional life and the opportunity to live a largely pressure-free and enjoyable life. Most of us will have worked hard for the majority of our lives in expectation of a comfortable retirement. Consequently, setting goals to ensure you remain active not only makes the most of your free time, but also makes the most of all those years working hard to earn such a retirement. Planning ahead and prioritising certain goals allows you to justify all of those years spent working by ensuring you enjoy those yet to come.


The reward

Finally, setting goals is important in later life because of the incredible amount of satisfaction achieving them brings about. Although this is true of setting and achieving goals in any stage of your life, the feeling is oftened amplified as we got older and begin to think of ourselves as less able or less likely to do the things that are important to us.


By setting goals and working hard to achieve them, we give ourselves the opportunity to feel that satisfaction time and time again, whether it’s something as simple as redecorating the house or as life-changing as learning a new language.


If you need some goal inspiration, check out our bucket list ideas article.

5 Bucket List Ideas For When You Retire 0

bucket list

For more and more retirees, the end of their professional careers marks a new chapter in their lives and provides an opportunity to do and try some of the things they’ve always dreamed of. For this reason, bucket lists have become an increasingly popular way of ensuring people make the most of their well-earned end of working life. While it’s not all bungee jumping and yoga retreats – you may also want to think about practical considerations like a funeral plan in order to ensure your wish fulfillment doesn’t leave your family with a financial burden – retirement should be about making the most of life and taking as much from it as possible.


Skyding is one of those things that seems to be on everyone’s bucket list, no matter how old you are. Whether it’s the idea of conquering your fear of heights or the adrenaline rush of throwing yourself out a plane at 12,000 feet that propels you to do it, skydiving is one of the activities you’ll never forget and is one that can often keep you coming back for more. Interestingly, age isn’t really a factor in being able to jump, so if you were thinking of using your retirement as an excuse not to do it, take a look at this 101 year old grandad who went skydiving with the rest of his family.

retirement plans

Cross a continent

In a tourism industry defined by budget flights and low cost travel options, it’s rare to hear about someone travelling all the way across a continent without flying. Whether it’s driving across the USA on the iconic Route 66, making your way through Asia on the Trans-Siberian Railway or following the historical route of the world famous Oriental Express, travelling the length of a continent is an exhilarating experience that you’ll never forget.

See one of the Seven Wonders of the World

If you want to see one of the Seven Wonders of the World, you’ll have to choose which list of seven wonders you want to use. There’s the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, the Seven Wonders of the Natural World and the Seven Wonders of the Modern World to name but a few. However, what really matters is that you get to visit some of the most breathtaking and beautiful structures in the history of mankind. Whether it’s the Great Pyramid of Giza, the Taj Mahal, the Golden Gate Bridge, Great Barrier Reef, Machu Picchu or the Empire State Building, it’s a trip that’s sure to leave a lasting impression and is definitely one for the bucket list.

retirement travel

Learn to dance

There are a lot of things we put off doing while we’re working because we consider them superfluous or too time consuming to pursue at the time. Now you’re retired, it’s time to take up all those hobbies and activities you never got round to. One of the most commonly cited of these is learning to dance. For the traditionalists out there, it could be learning to waltz; for something a little bit more modern, jive or swing; and for those that appreciate a Latin beat, salsa or tango. Whichever style you opt for, the joy is in expressing yourself, keeping active and learning something new, as demonstrated by these retired dancers.

See the Northern Lights

Finally, no bucket list would be complete without one of the most impressive natural phenomena on the planet, the Aurora Borealis. Otherwise known as the Northern Lights, this impressive celestial show can be experienced from a number of countries around the world, including Iceland, Canada and Russia, but if you’re looking for something a little closer to home, it’s also possible to see them in some parts of Scotland’s northern extremities.