Let’s DEFINE Retirement

in Retirement Savings, RRSP

How do you define retirement ?

So what is retirement really?

For my parents, they both retired and lived comfortable lives after working very hard.  They raised 3 sons and both of them worked full-time jobs (i.e. I do not resent or have any ill feelings about their retirement, they worked damn hard and deserved a nice retirement (unfortunately health issues did not make it as great as it should have been, but that is another story)).

Money, Coins, Pennies

I will still roll my coins in my retirement too

What do I hope for MY retirement?

  1. To be in good health and active for as long as I can be. No I don’t need to be running marathons, but an ability to walk where I want, lift things and take care of myself is very important (after seeing what my parents went through).
  2. To be out of debt, but this one  ca be a fleeting wish for me given I am helping my family out as best I can with education and I have a special needs child as well. I am planning on writing a few articles on the financial costs of having a child on the autism spectrum, but not just yet.
  3. Have an income where I can do what I want, but that is not to say I want to go on a cruise every year, or such, just do some fun things with my wife and family. My pension should be that basis, so I am less concerned in this area (unless my employer changes this around).
  4. I want to keep doing the things I love, and if those things include a job with a salary, I am OK  with that. I have a lot of “away from work” activities and that is my career now, my job is my salary. This web site is actually part of my “career” (no it doesn’t pay well, but you know that already).
  5. I want to help my kids if they need help (the way my parents and parents-in-law have helped us). This is not to say that everyone will think this is part of retirement, but in my mind being the Grandpa that sneaks their grandkids a $20 bill when their parents aren’t looking, will be a good thing.

Retirement Conclusions ?

An active life after work is what I look for in “retirement”, but I need to work very hard right now physically (as I already have some nagging health issues) and financially if I want to achieve this goal.

What does retirement mean to you?

{ 9 comments }

  • Colin Williams September 20, 2012, 2:50 AM

    Good post – One big issue that keeps coming up is the ‘sandwich’ generation. You may have health and some money, but there are responsibilities looking after your parents and helping your own children through college. This situation seems to be growing with people getting older and having children of their own later in life.

    For me, ( I hope) retirement will be a mix of work and play. if you like your work, why stop.

    Reply
  • Bret @ Hope to Prosper September 17, 2012, 4:52 PM

    I would like to semi-retire in my 50s and work 2-3 days a week from home, preferrably with my own business. Then, I could take mini-vacations on the long-weekends and enjoy my life, while I’m still in good health.

    At least, that’s the dream for now.

    Reply
    • bigcajunman September 18, 2012, 6:10 AM

      Seems like a good idea to me, I can’t do that, but I would love to try 😀

      Reply
  • GK September 16, 2012, 11:14 AM

    Good day…why is 10 secrets Rev Canada doesn’t want you to know not in your bookshelf of helping people…I’ve always wondered why the financial blogging community of unlicensed people dance around this book trying to figure out how to pay less tax…when it’s right there….enjoy your blogs from time to time…overall family debt is going to define retirement for CDN’s in a lot of cases, they just don’t know it yet, because it’s in the future…so the key will be to find something enjoyable/meaningful to do, not get stuffed into being a Wal Mart greeter…have a great day!

    Reply
    • bigcajunman September 16, 2012, 1:49 PM

      Seems like a fun book to read? I didn’t recommend using it, I simply suggest reading it (I also didn’t say buy it, I said borrow from library).

      Maybe you want to be a WalMart Greeter? Do what you want to do (but then again you should be doing that in your life anyhow).

      Reply
  • Elle P. September 12, 2012, 9:35 PM

    Ah, it’s wonderful to think of retirement…but *sigh* so far away, haven’t even found a steady job yet…

    At retirement, I see myself traveling here and there, growing a garden, and volunteering a lot.

    Reply
    • bigcajunman September 13, 2012, 9:17 AM

      It isn’t that far away, I was 25 yesterday (it feels like) now I am 51!

      Reply
  • LifeInsuranceCanada.com September 12, 2012, 8:05 AM

    Defining retirement is a very astute point. It seems most people simply cease working when they retire, but there are other shades. Like simply switching careers, or working ‘less’.

    I have an associate broker who’s a decade past retirement. He works full time (or more) because he loves what he does – it’s his hobby.

    My spouse wants to cease working and she likely will. I don’t think I will every stop working, I love working. I may slow down a bit, but not stop completely.

    Reply
    • bigcajunman September 13, 2012, 9:19 AM

      Retirement seems to imply you HATE your current job, in my case I am ambivalent, I used to love my jobs, now, whatever. You never “retire” from doing the things you love (at least that is my hope).

      Reply

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