What If Vacations Never Ended?

Summer is coming to an end and our family is packing for the last vacation of the year. I’ve researched places of interest to visit, made the appropriate reservations, finalized the itinerary, and packed the car.

Planning a trip can be very exciting. The thought of getting away for a few days and doing something completely different gives me a burst of energy.

I started to wonder, could this be how someone feels when they’re closing in on retirement? Co-workers begin to notice the spring in your step. Almost like they have a secret and can’t wait to tell everyone. The good times are right around the corner. In just a few short months, you’ll be getting to do all the things you’ve been putting off because there wasn’t enough time in the day while you were working.

A few days before our vacation, I started making a list of things that need to be taken care of at the house before leaving. I stopped my mail, went through the refrigerator and disposed of the perishables, arranged for the neighbor to take out my garbage, and hired a teenager to water my flowers.

To tell you the truth, I started thinking, “This vacation is a lot of work.” So, what must it be like to take a permanent vacation and retire?

Prepping for retirement is like prepping for a vacation on steroids. Why? Because it takes years of saving and investing to have a large enough nest egg to retire comfortably. Also, instead of spending a week on a vacation with your partner, you’ll be spending years.  

Did you know that some people enjoy planning a vacation more than the actual trip? I know people like this, and you probably do, too. They say it’s because when you plan for a vacation:

  • Everything is possible.

  • Nothing ever goes wrong.

  • Ridiculous logistical feats seem totally plausible and not at all annoying.

  • Planning makes a fantastic procrastination tool.

  • You get to buy stuff. Really cool stuff.

  • Anticipation makes you happy.

In order to make retirement a reality, take the time to figure out what your retirement will look like and then write down a plan. If you are married or in a relationship, do this together. Our financial planners will provide sound financial advice so you can make informed decisions and feel confident in your financial life. Throughout the years, you’ll need to update the plan to fit your changing needs and lifestyle. Keep communicating and adjusting and make retirement your best vacation ever!

- Gail Gill, CFP®, Worley Erhart-Graves Financial Advisors