It’s never too early to start thinking about retirement. Seriously, if you are 25 years old, you are not too young to begin thinking about what an ideal retirement would look like for you. Not only will this allow you to start saving early and dramatically increase the amount of money you will have when you retire, but you will also be able to figure out your retirement goals so you know just how much money you’ll need to reach them.

Whether I am mentoring an individual in her 30s or a couple in their mid-50s, I find that there is a huge gap when it comes to actual, identifiable retirement goals. Sure, most people have a general idea of what they want retirement to look like—enough money to travel, seeing grandchildren, etc.—but very few of them have concrete goals and a plan for how to get there. Are you struggling with identifying your own retirement goals? Here are some tips that can help you out.  

Know Thyself

My clients who have the most success in retirement are the ones who know themselves as individuals.  They understand what makes them happy and how they enjoy spending time. They are aware of how much leisure time is too much and are cognizant of what is worth spending hard-earned money on and what is not. It’s never too late to really get to know yourself—both as an individual and as part of a couple. Not only will this help you in identifying retirement goals, but it will also help you live a more fulfilling and meaningful life in the present.

Identify an Ideal Daily Life in Retirement

When many people think of retirement, they focus on the big things: finally taking that European vacation or being able to fund their grandkids’ educations. However, few think about what daily life will look like. How do they envision spending a normal Tuesday in retirement when they no longer have to go to the office? If you don’t think about and plan for these things, you might find yourself at loose ends and anxious when the day finally arrives. This is where hobbies and personal enrichment become very important. If you don’t have personally fulfilling ways to spend your time in retirement, you can easily become bored or even depressed.

Pinpoint Larger Goals

Of course, planning that European vacation and funding your grandkids’ education is important as well. In addition to thinking about daily life, make a wish list of big goals you and your spouse have. Whether that’s wintering in Florida or selling the house to buy an RV and travel the country, knowing your big goals is crucial to proper planning.

Understand What it All Costs and Adjust Accordingly

Now that you know what your ideal retirement looks like, it’s time to work with your advisor to figure out what it all means money-wise. If you’re young enough, you can still adjust your savings so that you can hit these goals. If you’re already reaching retirement age and don’t have enough to fund all your goals, you may need to look at making changes to your plan.

An ideal retirement looks different for everyone. Identifying what constitutes a truly fulfilling and happy retirement for you is all about focusing on daily life as well as big goals. Do you want help figuring out how to fund your ideal retirement? Please reach out so we can chat more!

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Patrick Tucker, owner of True Measure Wealth Managementhas over 20 years experience in the industry and has spent the last 15 years learning the ins and outs of the fee-only advisory business. He focuses on client behaviors and what ‘wealth’ means for each individual client to provide caregiving plans that leads to a mindful fulfillment of financial goals. A lifelong learner, Patrick uses his continued knowledge to become a valued partner for his clients and help them explore the wisdom of true wealth.