THE WORK PLACE: Retirement

SHARE   |   Monday, 04 April 2016   |   By Isang Lekhutile

Discussions on the subject above are always a non-starter for most of employees. Come rain or shine, the subject topic of retirement must be discussed somewhere and somehow in our careers.  The fact of the matter is: we live to get old. Retirement is a major life transition that requires changes to your income and lifestyle. How prepared are for you retirement? I have seen a decent amount of awareness around retirement issues, but the issue is whether that awareness translates into different behaviour. Retirement is one of the most important life events many of us will ever experience. From both a personal and financial perspective, realising a comfortable retirement is an incredibly extensive process that takes sensible planning and years of persistence. Managing your retirement is an ongoing responsibility that carries well into one's golden years. Before I begin discussing how to plan a successful retirement, we need to understand why we need to take our retirement into our own hands in the first place.

Unfortunately, many individuals do not understand the importance of planning for retirement. If you are one of those individuals, please take stock of yourself and change your outlook on planning and preparing for your retirement. While all of us would like to retire comfortably, the complexity and time required in building a successful retirement plan can make the whole process seem nothing short of daunting. However, it can often be done with fewer headaches (and financial pain) than you might think – all it takes is a little homework, an attainable savings and investment plan, and a long-term commitment. Retirement planning, in a financial context, refers to the allocation of savings or revenue for retirement. The goal of retirement planning is to achieve financial independence. Early planning for retirement is critical because it typically takes many years to accumulate the necessary funds to live comfortably when you no longer enjoy the advantages of a salary. If you begin your investing early in your working life, it will allow funds to accumulate and grow over the subsequent decades so that you have substantial resources for navigating your retirement years. Typically, retirement is the best time to meet your goals and transform your dreams into reality, but you can only do so if you are financially prepared.

Retirement brings a space and time that a working life makes difficult. It's an opportunity to collect experiences and engage in activities you found tricky to manage in the midst of the persistent responsibilities of a busy career. However, enjoying that high quality of life will require significant savings. Responsible retirement planning enables you to make your retirement years a time to thrive and indulge yourself. Insufficient retirement planning, meanwhile, can force you to scrimp and save and to worry over your resources, making money a restrictive force rather than a freeing one. The greatest reason why you should save for retirement is because it is your life. The amount of money that you save for retirement will have a profound impact on how your life is lived. Another important reason why you should start saving for retirement and early is for your children. Those who do not properly plan and save for retirement put a huge burden on their families. As a parent, it is your job to protect your children, not cause them to face their own financial difficulties because they must pay for your retirement expenses. Another one of the many reasons why you will want to start saving for your retirement is because you won’t want to keep on working. Those who are unprepared for retirement often keep on working or later return to the workforce. Saving for retirement can also help to ensure that you are well cared for. This is important in terms of health. There comes a point in everyone’s life when his or her health starts to worsen with age. While you may be able to live on your own and care for yourself when you first enter into retirement, there may come a point in time when you can no longer do so. There are a number of reasons why you should save for retirement. Your life is in your own hands, so start saving today.