Retirement Happiness: One Client’s Journey
We all go to work each day hoping to make a small difference. Quite honestly, that is why I got into the business of financial planning, to begin with, to make a difference. That said sometimes we all fall into the monotony of things, and thus can lose sight of the fact you are actually making a difference. The other day I was reminded of that in the most amazing way.
I was routinely emailing with a recently retired client. She responded with a rather normal response, until the end that is. That is when this client sent me their “retirement” blog. Of course, I couldn’t wait to open it and read it (which I did waiting for my son to come out from school). Much to my surprise, it started like this:
Andrew’s happiness blogs made me reflect upon how the last 3 years of retirement have gone for me vs what I thought it was going to be like before I retired. This is the story of my personal journey through the thought process on retiring, and how it has panned out almost 3 years later, and how it relates to happiness!
(Hint: want me to read your blog start by mentioning me first j/k)
Financial Peace of Mind
In all seriousness, I was touched beyond belief. The blog went on to discuss how this individual was finding happiness in an entirely new way. Not selling their home and moving to the beach as they found a new love for their home. It spoke about their time spent with their grandkids and passions. It even went as far as this person talking about how they felt so financially secure they were financially helping their children out with things like home purchases.
Long story short it was a stark reminder that this mission I and my colleagues at Diversified are on actually makes a difference. We try to give our clients financial peace of mind and enable them to live their best, and happiest lives. Watching the transformation of this client, who was once a stressed-out high-level executive (like the rest of us), turn into someone blogging about their own inner happiness has transcended anything beyond my wildest dreams.
Finding Happiness in Retirement
Now the moral of the story isn’t to follow this client’s path to happiness, as it is unique to them. Instead, it is to highlight the journey. As the old saying goes, it is about the journey, not the destination. This person took my advice (or their own) and did some real retirement soul searching. The first few months of retirement were a blast. They were completely free and took advantage of it. Road their bike, worked out, read, relaxed, and basically enjoyed having no confines.
I think many of you reading this can relate, or will relate to this someday. What I found very commendable was their thoughtfulness to what came next. As mostly everyone that retires hits the initial honeymoon stage of realizing this is a permanent vacation. The real challenge lies in what comes next. What is the meaning of the next stage of your life? How will you fill the days? Most importantly, what about this next stage will make you truly happy?
These are the questions we should all be asking ourselves. For this individual, it was their first grandchild, helping their family, enjoying their spouse, seeing family, and a whole lot more. The question we should all be asking ourselves is what is it for you?
Meaning In Retirement
I applaud my client for taking control of their own life and happiness. Finding the meaning of retirement to them and doing the hardest thing…. Putting the wheels in motion.
I’d be lying if it didn’t feel good to be mentioned in their blog. However, large or small part our partnership had in them living their best life, and feeling financially secure, put a big freaking smile on my face.
Stay wealthy, healthy, and happy as I know this client is!
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