Reinventing Retirement

Contributed by: Sandra Adams, CFP® Sandy Adams

The definition of reinvention is to bring back or to revive. Retirement to most clients is less about the ending of a past life or career and more about the beginning of a new life. Our planning and conversations center around how we can make the most of the next segment or our clients’ lives – how can they “reinvent” themselves.

Gone are the days of retirement spent in rocking chairs on the porch or in front of the television set. Today’s retirees are younger (at least at heart) and focused on staying healthy, active, and engaged. They are finding opportunities to travel, to volunteer, to take personal development classes, and even to go back to work in a second career.

I recently had the opportunity to watch a wonderfully refreshing movie that illustrated retirement reinvention in a most interesting way. The Intern, starring Robert De Niro and Anne Hathaway, tells the story of Ben Whittaker (Robert De Niro), a 70-year-old retired widower who takes the opportunity to become a senior intern at an online start up fashion site. Ben soon becomes popular with his younger co-workers, including Jules Ostin (Anne Hathaway) who’s the boss and founder of the company. Whittaker's charm, wisdom, and sense of humor help him develop a special bond and growing friendship with Jules. Ben proves to himself and to everyone else that he encounters that work ethic, strength of character, and experience never go out of style. 

Retirement is a time to redefine and reinvent yourself – use the next segment of your life to do things you never had time to do, to learn something new, or to use your years of experience and knowledge to add value in different areas, like Ben Whittaker did in The Intern. As you plan for the financial transition into retirement, work with your financial planner to make sure that you also plan for your retirement reinvention. To have a successful “retirement,” it is important that while you feel financially confident, you also continue to feel emotionally and socially fulfilled and valued. When you retire, your life is not over—Ben Whittaker said it best: “I still have music in me, absolutely positive about that!”

Sandra Adams, CFP® is a Partner and Financial Planner at Center for Financial Planning, Inc. Sandy specializes in Elder Care Financial Planning and is a frequent speaker on related topics. In addition to her frequent contributions to Money Centered, she is regularly quoted in national media publications such as The Wall Street Journal, Research Magazine and Journal of Financial Planning.

Any opinions are those of Sandy Adams and not necessarily those of Raymond James.