Retirement Series -Why We Are Not Planning Our Retirement?

man sitting on wooden bench wearing black leather jacket

Why do we procrastinate planning our retirement? Most of us in a paid job will retire. Mandatory retirement differs between countries, most being in the bracket of 60 to 70 years of age. Unless we have a job that allows us to be employed until the day we die, very few of us can expect to get a pay cheque beyond 70.

We keep hearing and reading on a daily basis that more and more people in the coming years are going to live in poverty during their old age. We hardly give it a second thought that if we are blessed with old age, we are going to find challenges that naturally comes with aging. Having not enough money is going to make things worse. Why than do we keep putting off planning for retirement?

Laziness is usually given as a reason for procrastination. But, I think retirement planning is not seen as a priority because we normally we are fooled by four (4) things.

  1. Age

George Bernard Shaw once wrote that “Youth is the most precious thing in life; it is too bad it has to be wasted on young folks.

We somehow think we are going to be at the same age forever. Most of us probably will start working around our mid-twenties, and we tend to think that we will be in our 20s the next twenty years. Very few think about retirement when they are starting their careers. Most are thinking about buying necessary and mostly unnecessary things. The thing about starting any journey is the destination. The end of a career is retirement. The habit of starting with the end in mind is something we must cultivate and live by. It is good to remind ourselves every now and then, that we age every day. As difficult as it is to envision ourselves as old when we are young and feeling rather invincible, we must have the humility to accept that we will all wither with time.

  • Free time

We have the tendency to disrespect free time. Rather than looking it as a blessing and putting it into good use, most of us are spend it on activities that makes us feel good. We are programmed to think that free time is for leisure only. The human body and soul needs rest. That is certain and that is not up for argument but do we really need to spend every minute of the free time we get with rest and recreation. We often fail to take advantage of the time available and we end up putting off important and useful things that we must do.

  • Feeling of Comfort

If you are reading this, you are relatively comfortable. You probably have a job and earning an income. You might not be happy with your income or the car that you drive, but you are in an okay zone. You do have your unfulfilled wants but you have the blessings of necessity. Security, food, clothes and shelter are well taken care for.

And you believe things will be like that until you say your final good-bye.  This feeling of comfort is an illusion. Truth is that you can lose all that quickly.

The Scout Motto – Be prepared – That is a good code to live by.

  • Health

We seldom think we will face health challenges. The fact that we are healthy now tend to fool us thinking we will be healthy the next fifty years. Among the challenges of old age is health. Having the means to deal with it can make it easier.

The four things above fools us into putting odd our retirement planning.

Be aware of what Socrates said about the bareness of the busy life. Some of us are so busy with our careers and burnt out that we rarely think deeply of our older selves. Others are having too much fun in the sun that it blinds them to realities of life.

Don’t lie to yourself telling that you will get your retirement planning done within the next few months. And that you will do it yourself. Almost every time people who say that never get moving.

Message me if you need assistance.