Well, in reality, this has been building for about 10 weeks.
I am disappointed too – in myself because I have played a role in what has annoyed me.
For the last 7 years, my day job has been in Management with a Financial Planning Business. Specifically, we deal with Retirement Planning, Retirement Income structuring and Retirement Preparation.
We regularly inform people they can afford to retire and do everything they want to do and more, hey, fly Business Class.
We meet with clients who express dissatisfaction with their work place, inform them they are well off and can retire at which point they say they will keep working, even though they hate it.
Professionally, I have perhaps shrugged my shoulders and taken the approach of “well, it is your decision to make but you now have the facts”
It has become more personal in recent months.
Several people I care about are either returning to work, or continuing to work.
In two cases, they have degenerative conditions and each day is the next best they will ever be. The stresses of work, in roles they dislike and with employers they have lost faith in creates a non-inspiring, value lacking cynical work environment. They hate it.
Add to this that they are in there late 50’s, debt free and child free, well invested and exceptionally well superannuated means ceasing work is not an issue financially. They do not need the money.
In one other case, the financial position is sound but there is still a son at school however the health challenge is far more severe.
In all cases, they go to work, despising what they do and with whom they do it.
In all cases, their reasons for doing so are the same. They have no idea what they would do if they did not have the structure that comes with work. They have no plan.
So, they go and do daily, what they know is destructive.
They have absolutely no sustainable interests or plans for when they cease work meaning they continue to do what is most destructive to them personally. It is sad.
We spend years and years educating ourselves to give us career and work options. We then spend the next 35 years ignoring the need for post career options.
We, the Retirement Planning industry need to be looking further than ‘just money”. We need to be educating clients from age 35 about the need to plan their total retirement and we need to do this with the same enthusiasm we talk money. And, we need to do it for real, no beach scenes or sunsets.
And we need to start now.
Don’t let this story be you, or those you care about.