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Surviving Retirement With a Little Planning Ahead and Humor

Updated on August 21, 2017
Perspycacious profile image

Writer, editor, publisher Demas W. Jasper's articles on HubPages have had over 62,000 Views and 9,100 Comments on a wide range of subjects.

A Couple...of Suggestions

The Spanish are still looking for the Fountain of Youth.  Save your time, and save your money. Aging is still around the corner.
The Spanish are still looking for the Fountain of Youth. Save your time, and save your money. Aging is still around the corner. | Source

Where does the time go?

Folks who retire have had all the prior years to decide what they will be doing when they retire.

Most plan those activities as poorly as how they will pay for their retirement.

The days of employer pensions are disappearing in the rear view mirror.

There are several options for the retirement years:

A. Don't retire until you can't find work to do.

B. Have retirement as a lifetime goal,and save for the retirement you want.

C. Somehow make do with what you saved, and cut back on the monthly budget.

D. Throw caution to the wind and hope you die shortly before or after you retire.

Let's ignore that last one. Homelessness could happen, and does, but it should not be a lifetime goal..

Let's also presume that the world doesn't end in our lifetime. If it did, any planning would count for very little.

What remains are three options over which we have some control, however far from total control.

Not retiring requires that we stay relatively healthy and develop some marketable skills we can still perform as we continue to age.

Saving for a planned retirement is a traditional goal and presumes we stay mobile and reasonably healthy while putting away a planned amount of savings for those years that stretch on to the horizon.

Cutting the monthly budget following retirement is likely in any case. Olfder workers, regardless of their skills, have a track record of lowered income and radically lowered expectations.

Here are some retirement strategies which have worked well for other retirees. Take your choice, and devote your efforts to making your choice work.

1. Each time you have a raise the added net income goes into your retirement account. After all, you lived on the pre-raise income and presumably you still can.

2. Make a strategic partnership whereby your partner is your security for your retirement, i. e. marry rich or marry a younger partner who keeps on working to finance your retirement style as long as you can get away with doing so.

3. Raise a gaggle of intelligent children who love you and love the work that they do; children who would like nothing better than to welcome you into their lives with open arms. Some babysitting and chores should be expected, and plan to have your own transportation for when "togetherness" grows thin and it is time for another child's turn.

4. Take a survival course, and plan to "live off the land."

5. Plan to live in a foreign land where everyone is willing to pay to learn your native language.

6. Plan to move to a farm and self-provide, remembering that some health, strength, and true grit will be required.

7. Learn to fish and hunt, and become a professional guide with off seasons spent back in civilization.

8. Become a talent scout providing talent for athletic teams. Eyesight and communications skills are required along with a good sense of judging character and potential. Recruiters and talent scouts are valued in many fields, so take your choice of fields.

9. Learn to convey humor that sells as you journey life's path. Each day and each stage of life has a practically inexhaustible supply, life being as silly as it is.

10. Become an appraiser by developing a hobby you pursue later in life as an expert in a field you find enjoyable.

11. Develop marketable skills in any field that truly interests you, from photography to puzzles, satire to politics (not a big leap), cooking to design.

All of that aside, the old saying still applies "Failing to plan is planning to fail."

No one of us needs a crystal ball to look ahead. If we had one, our future would be secure. Fortune tellers, of any good reputation, would know their future and plan ahead.

We mere mortals can only plan, and hope our plan is a good one, good enough to make life worth living all the way to something better---or at least as good as we can make it while we are still here.

What is your spending/savings plan?

We can spend it now, spend it later, or win the Powerball jackpot.  Ideally, we can spend reasonably now, and still have something safely set aside for our retirement years.
We can spend it now, spend it later, or win the Powerball jackpot. Ideally, we can spend reasonably now, and still have something safely set aside for our retirement years. | Source

© 2017 Demas W. Jasper All rights reserved.


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    • Perspycacious profile image

      Demas W Jasper 2 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      Dear Yves,

      Option 3 is a last resort for solitary offspring, best achieved by winning everlasting love from their chosen partner(s), so you have doubled your chance(s) of survival.

      With your pen name of "savvydating" I would never suspect you of marrying only for riches, much less dating solely for expensive dates while ignoring exciting, fascinating, attractive dates!


    • savvydating profile image

      Yves 2 months ago

      Is it bad if I pick option No. 3? Unfortunately, I only had one child, so he's stuck with retirement duty. (I'm only half kidding.) Actually, I forsee myself working part-time even after official retirement age. But I guess that's okay. Maybe I should have planned ahead and married rich. Lol. (I could never marry for that reason alone.)

      I enjoyed this hub because you sprinkled it with humor. Reading this article made me smile. :)

    • DREAM ON profile image

      DREAM ON 2 months ago

      I planned to retire when I turned forty. I had a plan in place that didn't work out like I thought it would. I am currently still working and making new plans to retire sooner than later. In the meantime I carefully look at other retirees and see what kind of life they have. I am fifty three and have still twelve plus years to go. The retirement age use to be 65 now I heard they moved it up to 67 for the baby boomer generation. Is that true? I have been adding to my 401 k and slowly my retirement fund is growing. I found one good thing about planning for retirement is... If you find a job you absolutely love then you will be excited as you plan for your future. If you don't retire when you expected you don't mind it as much because it is like the gang is all here. Find things you love about your job and then the steps towards retirement while you are still working will be filled with promise and excitement. Take care of your health and your health will make retirement much more worthwhile. I loved all your tips and keep them coming. How many years have you been retired? May each day bring you new happiness.

    • profile image

      Perspycacious 2 months ago

      The best life plan is one that focuses on enjoying today while planning for the tomorrows. I know each of you well enough to know that you have certainly done that. I would that others do also.

    • lifegate profile image

      William Kovacic 3 months ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

      Thanks, Demas. I'll be retiring shortly so there's much to think about. A great job of bringing it all into focus.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 3 months ago from The Caribbean

      I like the mood of this article. There is also much food for thought in your suggestions, even if it only means weighing the options.

    • Perspycacious profile image

      Demas W Jasper 3 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      MizBejabbers - Very appropriate, and several professions in the course of a working life has become today's normal. While real estate has had some ups and downs, over the long haul it has been a good investment and a wise addition to your own retirement plans apparently. We have been simplifying, raising a garden, fruits, and nuts on a quarter Acre we purchased beside our home. That takes work that provides exercise and its benefits. We still have other options for adjusting later, if needed, but we are comfortable and secure.

    • MizBejabbers profile image

      MizBejabbers 3 months ago

      Demas, some good suggestions here, some are quite feasible. When I was in my 40s, I realized that I had to choose between the career I loved so much in broadcasting and a comfortable retirement several years later. After it became almost impossible to still do the work I loved, mainly because machines were replacing people in that field, I went to work for a newspaper learning to edit other people's copy. Then I got a job with the state as a legal editor and the boss was happy when I went back to college and got an MA. I retired two weeks ago after 29 years in that career, but I also worked well past my retirement age because I enjoyed it so much. I will be 75 next month.

      I have a nice retirement because my plans included one of your suggestions. We bought a house in a pleasant neighborhood in 1994, which we could barely afford, and it is definitely large enough. As my salary increased, we were able to pay it off. Then when I turned full retirement age, I started drawing Social Security and putting it into a money market account. We also acquired two rental properties, which make a little money and save on our income taxes. We don't touch the savings unless there is an emergency. As a result, we have a comfortable retirement, but we have reduced our purchasing because the need to spend just isn't there anymore.

      A retired coworker of mine said that she and her husband gave up their luxury of eating out several times a week, but I haven't had to do that. Because I have a gluten sensitivity and get tired of salads, we don't eat out more than four or five times a month anyway. Besides, my husband had training in French cooking school in Paris, thanks to Uncle Sam, and fixes more delicious food than any restaurant in town anyway. I guess you could say that I had a good plan, but I consider myself well blessed.

    • Perspycacious profile image

      Demas W Jasper 3 months ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      Dear Eric, My grandfather Sanford Winslow went back to work at age 84 and lived past 94. Keeping active is a key, and it sounds as if you are practicing that same approach. Good for you. You don't need to "get this" as long as you can keep on un-retiring. God bless, Demas

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 3 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      I have retired at least 3 times. I think I do not get this.