This series, Retiring Gay, primarily considers the financial steps to successful retirement. However, preparing emotionally for retirement is equally important to a happy, fulfilling and successful retirement. Planning for retirement is your opportunity to reconsider day to day living. Insurance, investments, spending, savings, socializing, residence and many other considerations change. Reaching retirement with a well executed plan makes your transition to a post work life easier and more fulfilling.
Retiring is effectively starting a new life. That restart entails endless choices and decisions from what to do daily with your time, how to pay for it all, which things to keep and which dispose of, and where to live.
Retiring in place can be a simple step, the only change being that one day you don’t to work the next day. Retiring gay in South Florida can be a simple step when you already live in a downsized mortgage free home and are happy with the environment. Retiring in place can keep you in your circle of friends and family; can keep your living costs much the same and you can live out your life in a familiar area.
Many who retire have dreams of moving to a quaint cottage in a distant place surrounded by people or places that appeal to them. Uprooting and moving marks a clear line between the work-a-day life and retirement. Making this transition can also serve many other purposes for the next stage in your new life.
Moving forces you to review the things you own and decide if each is important enough to take to the new location, or will even be useful there. Obviously that full length fur coat will be of little use in South Florida. Relieving yourself of the accumulation of a lifetime can in and of itself be freeing and such a downsizing is a good idea in anticipation of retirement making the job at retirement that much easier.
There are many methods to deciding what goes and what is worth keeping. Turn all the hangers in the closet backwards replacing each correctly as you use the item; the ones still backwards at the end of a year are disposable, you don’t use them. Take the bottom half of each stack of folded clothes in your drawers and discard them; you haven’t worn them and probably won’t. Open every closet and cabinet and take everything in the back half out and discard it. Go into the garage or attic and remove things that have been sitting since the last move. Get rid of the storage unit and all its contents.
Doing this in anticipation of retiring makes the job that much less onerous when you have many other things to be thinking about. Having done all this, when you finally move do it again. You will be amazed at how little you really need, or even use, so just get rid of it. The catharsis of lightening your worldly load will feel wonderful.
Considering where to relocate is perhaps as big a decision as retiring itself. Living and working in the cold often carries dreams of retiring to a warm place. Living and working in a city often carries dreams of retiring to a small town or rural location. Living and working in the suburbs often carries dreams of retiring to an urban or artsy environment.
By traveling to prospective retirement locations while working you can find out if one truly holds a long-term appeal. When you find yourself going back to the same place multiple times perhaps you have found your place.
More and more gays are retiring to RVing; though not the least expensive route to retirement housing RVing delivers a previously unknown freedom. In addition, RVing serves to help identify where you might want to live the balance of your life, introduces you to a new community, and lets you see the world in your own condo on wheels. RVing is the ultimate downsizing. Well, short of a studio on South Beach.
With this piece the Retiring Gay series is now officially retired. Missed a week? Don’t worry. Catch up at SFGN.com/RetiringGay to follow the series online.