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After years of hard work, you’re certainly entitled to a happy retirement. But when are you to know when you are both financially and emotionally ready?

In terms of retirement, we would advise really thinking about it for about 5 years before you are actually planning to retire. Something we try to stress to clients is that you need to have a plan. You need something that you are retiring to. There is a purpose and a value of work that meets an enormous amount of needs you have and if you give that up it can have consequences you haven’t dreamt of yet.

Look at your calendar on your phone, how full is it? Packed probably with meetings and things you need to do? So now imagine you are retired, how does it look? It’s probably empty, and that will drive a busy professional like yourself nuts,

Simply thinking golfing or sea swimming will be your plan for the days ahead isn’t the best solution, particularly for those who have worked in senior management positions or have run their own businesses. There are only so many hours a week you can play golf or go for a swim.


Here’s how you’ll know you’re ready for retirement.

Draw up a calendar and break each day of the week into the morning, afternoon and evening leaving you with 21 slots. If you can fill these in, retire, but until then wait it out. Retiring too soon will set you up for an enormous emotional roller coaster of losing your purpose, losing the value you have of actively contributing and being busy.

It can also be helpful to practice retirement and start taking on new activities that interest you. Don’t do it cold turkey. Figure out what you want and give it a trial run. This could involve using up some holidays to travel, taking up that new activity you have planned or volunteering. We advise spending the year before your intended retirement mapping out your time in retirement

These are also things to consider before retiring:

  • Are you financially prepared?
  • Have you eliminated debt?
  • Do have a plan to cope with emergencies?
  • Have you got health insurance?
  • Do you have a strong social network (outside of work)?
  • You can fill your time

If you can answer all these questions, then congratulations you are ready to retire in peace. Retiring too early can be a mistake that leads to you not enjoying retirement to its fullest—especially if you’re forced to re-enter the workforce by financial necessity instead of your own choice. Take the time to plan carefully so that you make the right decision on when to retire.


At Rockwell, we’ll take all the complexity out of planning for retirement for you and help you make the right retirement planning and pension decisions. For more advice and information about retirement planning, why not chat with one of our team members?

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