The title of this article may sound a little cliched and sentimental – but the fact is it is delightfully true! In our grand-parents time it was perhaps seen as a marginal part of your life where you are put out to grass. A waiting room for that long anticipated meeting with the head guy while the rest of the world goes about its business.

Wow how things have changed. The news is in: 60 is the new 40!

Nowadays retirement can take up to about one third of the whole of our lives.  Sure, our health will have been better, but with current advances in medical knowledge our autumn days will not only be more comfortable and safer, we are also able to do much more. With work finally taking a backseat (in fact let’s throw it off the bus!), we all have the time to do all those things we always wanted to do.

Plan for retirement

In other words, welcome to the best part of your life – don’t waste it. Make sure you can enjoy it by preparing financially throughout your life. Take advantage of the new pension reforms in order to take retirement as early as possible. Consult a registered financial advisor to create a strategy where your funds are used to the best possible effect.

Now you have the money to keep you and your family afloat for the foreseeable future you can decide how you can turn your retirement years into luxury. So as a trigger and a motivation here are some ideas to get you started:

  1. Become a volunteer. We all need to feel validated and too much free time can have a negative effect. So, find something you really believe in and offer your time. You will find it is a great way to make friends, remain a part of the community and get that special feeling of helping others.

 

  1. How many of us have come back from a holiday thinking, “I could live there”? We all think it but few of us make that bold move.  It does take a lot of planning and you need to make sure you understand welfare rights abroad, access to healthcare and a good understanding of the cost of living etc. But it could open the door to your own personal paradise.

 

  1. Just as it is important to keep your body in trim it is essential to keep your mind on the ball too. Maybe now is the time to follow those adult education courses you have been putting off for so long? Now is the time to allocate space to achieve those qualifications you have always denied yourself.

 

  1. Talking of keeping your mind in trim, this does not mean boring old exercises or spending tiresome hours down the gym. Nor do you have to be running the 5 minute mile. Walking is not only a great way to stay healthy, you can see and explore the countryside, meet new friends through the ramblers society and the national trust and explore a whole new world.

 

  1. Part of the misery of work is we have to do it. But sometimes it is something we enjoy doing, it can bring in that useful extra bit of income, it can be rewarding in itself. In other words, you can still continue working part-time when you are retired. Balance it with all that free-time!

 

  1. Are you an explorer? Now it is perhaps the time to grab your compass and rucksack and mark out where you want to visit. Travelling in later years is a niche area for tour operators who offer holidays especially for those over 60 if that is what you are looking for.

Don’t underestimate the power of your retirement – the best is yet to come! When looking at options for your pension, consider using a regulated financial adviser like Portafina or, view the info at pension wise