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It’s More Than Just Finances: The Psychology Of Retirement

It’s More Than Just Finances: The Psychology Of Retirement

There are certain phases of life that most of us just naturally fall into with little to no psychological effort. Retirement, however, isn’t one of those phases. It’s a time of life that requires both careful forethought and changes to mindset.

Many think of retirement purely on a monetary level, particularly how their finances will change. Indeed, just managing current and future finances can be a full-time job during retirement. However, retirement also involves many psychological aspects.

For the last forty or more years, your career has been one of the main things that defined your life. Just think about how many times you’ve used your occupation to partly introduce yourself, give meaning to your life, or describe who you are. There’s often an initial feeling of overwhelming identity loss when retiring. If you’re not defined by the career you’ve spent the majority of your life building anymore, then you’re going to need to reinvent who you are now and who you plan to become in the future.

Start out by composing a list of what you’ve always wanted to do, but have never had the money or time to get done. Maybe you want to be a world traveler or volunteer for a cause close to your heart. Maybe you want to complete your education for personal satisfaction, start an entirely new career, or try your hand at being a business owner. Whatever is going to help you define the new you, it should be something that’s feasible and practical to accomplish.

Be careful about thinking that retirement is the end of monotonous work and the beginning of fun and exciting activity. Research has shown that there are potentially very serious consequences (such as boredom, depression, and feelings of being nonproductive) for many that don’t work after they retire.

Many retirees mistakenly think that a certain leisure activity that they’ve always loved or wanted to try will keep them interested and occupied. But, after just a few months, most usually find that monotony isn’t something unique to work activities. One way to avoid the pitfall of boredom during retirement is to test-drive various activities while you’re still working. It makes sense that if you get tired of playing golf every weekend for a year, then it certainly isn’t going to hold your interest during retirement. Likewise, if you plan on opening a business or starting a new career, then you can test-drive your new identity by taking night classes or working weekends in a business like the one you plan to open. Finding a new you will also help you to stay happy and productive, which will be essential considering you will now most likely be spending more time than ever with your significant other and family.

Long-Term Care Insurance Protects Much More Than Money

Long-Term Care Insurance Protects Much More Than Money

With 77 million U.S. baby boomers reaching retirement over the next decade, experts say that the number of people in need of long-term care will double over the next 30 years. Some estimate that 14 million Americans will require some form of assistance with day-to-day activities by 2035. Consequently, senior care could soon replace child care as the country’s number one dependent care issue.

The cost of long-term care can range anywhere from $25,000 to $95,000 a year depending on the region. Without long-term care insurance to cover this hefty price, many families end up paying out of pocket and suffering great financial strain. However, money isn’t the only thing at stake for families without long-term care insurance.

Money isn’t everything

Families who are suddenly faced with the unexpected cost of long-term care must make a tough decision: They can either pay the exorbitant price for a nursing home or professional caregiver or take the ailing loved one into their own home.

A great deal of families without long-term care insurance end up caring for their relative at home. Such families often have dependent children in the home in addition to an ailing parent. They quickly learn that caring for an ill loved one has a major emotional and physical impact on everyone in the family.

Physical, emotional and financial impacts

When you take a sick loved one into your home, every day tasks such as eating, bathing, dressing or going to the bathroom become daunting struggles. Plus, caring for an ailing senior is a full-time job—24 hours a day, seven days a week. The responsibilities involved with this undertaking begin to take a toll on the entire family.

Oftentimes, those caring for a sick relative no longer have time to take care of themselves. They abandon healthy eating habits and exercise routines because they simply don’t have time anymore. They also suffer from high levels of stress.

Caregivers often become sleep deprived because they must get up numerous times throughout the night to help their loved one. This can all add up to health problems for the caregiver. As a matter of fact, some studies show that long-term caregivers often have a shorter lifespan and more health problems than other people their age.

Many long-term caregivers end up quitting or losing their jobs. After all, you can only take so many sick days to care for your loved one. Without a job to help pay the bills, many of these families find themselves struggling financially, often sinking deep into debt.

Avoid the strain with long-term care insurance

If you believe that long-term care insurance is unaffordable, just think about the price you and your family could have to pay without it. By planning ahead, you will save yourself and your loved ones from immeasurable amounts of physical, emotional and financial stress.

Planning for long-term care is not an easy task for anyone. Most of us don’t want to think about a time when we or one of our loved ones may need help with simple daily tasks. However, in order to protect your family’s financial and emotional well-being, it’s important to plan ahead for an unexpected long-term care situation.

Having long-term care insurance will greatly lessen the suffering that comes with a long-term illness—for both the caregiver and the patient. That’s because with insurance, your family can afford to place your loved one under professional care. This will allow you to focus on dealing with the emotional issues of having an ailing loved one instead of completely draining yourself by trying to meet their physical needs 24/7.

The first step in protecting yourself from such a painful situation is to talk to Brian Gruss who can help you design a long-term care plan. Brian can walk you through your family’s needs and find an insurance policy that fits your unique situation and budget.