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Old 08-14-2014, 05:41 AM
 
Location: Central Massachusetts
4,800 posts, read 4,843,254 times
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Well for one I must say that it is very important to have a plan in place. I think though that the most valuable ingredient is knowledge. I think that is why many of us come to this site. We have questions and ideas that we want to bounce off the experiences of others. Since I am still in the preparation phase I count myself as one who is looking for validation of what work I have done.

I know money is important and will determine how comfortable you are in retirement. It also is a double edged sword in that money doesnt always buy happiness.
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Old 08-14-2014, 06:27 AM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,967,079 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by golfingduo View Post
Well for one I must say that it is very important to have a plan in place. I think though that the most valuable ingredient is knowledge. I think that is why many of us come to this site. We have questions and ideas that we want to bounce off the experiences of others. Since I am still in the preparation phase I count myself as one who is looking for validation of what work I have done.

I know money is important and will determine how comfortable you are in retirement. It also is a double edged sword in that money doesnt always buy happiness.
We certainly see that in the fabulously wealthy celebs who have taken their lives. RIP, Williams and Hoffman, Garland and others.

Some years back a poster named LiveContent put forth the Five-F theory for happiness in retirement. I remember four of them: family, friends, familiarity, food (the kind you love that you can easily get), and....?

Family, Friends...I'm finding family (not my family of origin, but my own kids and grandkids) and friends are tops. One can live in paradise but if lonely, then what.

Familiarity...is something we don't think about till we've lost it. A place where "everybody knows your name" (for better or worse, lol), where you know the lay of the land, the favorite hangouts, the roads, the deals, etc has a strong ring of comfort to some.

Food...I couldn't live in an area where I had to drive more than a half-hour to find the foods I need and want to cook with. That means wholesome foods, not regular supermarkets (though some are getting better). Around here we have some great eateries (nothing metro) whose food won't have me ill the next day. They're popular hangouts that are largely informal with good quality offerings.

LiveContent, where are you? What's the fifth F? Perhaps it is Faith. Not necessarily religion, as that has its complexities. But simple Faith.
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Old 08-14-2014, 07:16 AM
 
10,320 posts, read 9,369,968 times
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I don't believe that most people are that much different after they retire - as far as happiness anyway. You're still the same person; the only difference is that you don't have to get up and go to work. But you're still you....meaning, if one is content with who they are, comfortable with who they are, etc., those are the characteristics we take with us once retired.

You'd still have the same relatives, and there's no reason why you wouldn't continue with the same friendships.

Am not quite sure I understand what the OP is referring to as far as "validation of what work" was performed.
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Old 08-14-2014, 07:51 AM
 
Location: State of Being
35,885 posts, read 67,141,087 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by katie45 View Post
I don't believe that most people are that much different after they retire - as far as happiness anyway. You're still the same person; the only difference is that you don't have to get up and go to work. But you're still you....meaning, if one is content with who they are, comfortable with who they are, etc., those are the characteristics we take with us once retired.

You'd still have the same relatives, and there's no reason why you wouldn't continue with the same friendships.

Am not quite sure I understand what the OP is referring to as far as "validation of what work" was performed.
This is how I feel, too . . . happiness is a choice, just as how you structure your retirement life is a choice (and that includes where you retire).

I think I have stated before something I was told 30 or so years ago and that stuck with me: "There is no salvation in geography." I think that has a lot of truth in it. If you are an unhappy person, you will continue to be unhappy wherever you are. I do think one's environment can be either compatible or incompatible on differing levels, so in that sense, finding the right "geography" can make a person more comfortable or bring impediments (such as bad weather meaning travel issues). But in the end, we take whoever we are to whatever situation and location we choose.

What I have learned from listening to others, added to what I am learning -- I would say the most important factor is to be able to live with some peace of mind about finances. The second thing would be to deal with health issues as expeditiously as possible and to be realistic about changes in lifestyle that can (and usually do!) come with aging and changing health. And if you have a partner, the third thing is that you both are on the same page with shaping your lifestyle and that you each clearly understand what the other is expecting out of the last decades of your lives together.

Perhaps the most important is attitude, but that is true at any stage of life. Having a sense of humor about the absurdities of life that often shape this journey will help get through bumps in the road. And being flexible about alternatives when situations arise -- I think that is key to happily resolving the unexpected bits of life.

In the end, I don't think a person can be any happier in retirement than he or she has been for the rest of his/her life.
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Old 08-14-2014, 08:01 AM
 
Location: Southwestern, USA
15,354 posts, read 12,114,801 times
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Health...second, if you have children* that u raised them well..to be kind, balanced people.
Security of home, heat, transportation taken care of.

*selfish, troubled, angry adult children can make life more
miserable than lack of money.
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Old 08-14-2014, 08:35 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,726,438 times
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Here is my "best ingredients" list:

1. Reasonable financial security. Lavish living NOT required. But assurance of a modest level of comfort removes much stress.

2. Reasonably good health. This is only partially in our own hands, of course. Good habits like not smoking, a good diet and continued physical activity will improve our chances but will not guarantee anything.

3. Some meaningful activity or engagement with the outside world. This can take many, many forms and in my opinion is more important for singles that for couples, who at least have built-in interaction with one other human being. I am divorced and live alone, so perhaps I am particularly aware of this third point.
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Old 08-14-2014, 09:10 AM
 
Location: Central Massachusetts
4,800 posts, read 4,843,254 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Escort Rider View Post
Here is my "best ingredients" list:

1. Reasonable financial security. Lavish living NOT required. But assurance of a modest level of comfort removes much stress.

2. Reasonably good health. This is only partially in our own hands, of course. Good habits like not smoking, a good diet and continued physical activity will improve our chances but will not guarantee anything.

3. Some meaningful activity or engagement with the outside world. This can take many, many forms and in my opinion is more important for singles that for couples, who at least have built-in interaction with one other human being. I am divorced and live alone, so perhaps I am particularly aware of this third point.

All excellent points. Something to do, health enough to do it, and enough money to do it.
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Old 08-14-2014, 09:38 AM
 
Location: Southern Oregon coast
480 posts, read 506,539 times
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Happy Retirement Recipe


10 pounds of good health

2 heaping cups of security

1 cup of resilience

3 tablespoons of curiosity

1 teaspoon of acceptance

Sprinkle generously with love

Mix together and enjoy.



This recipe is easily adapted and adjusted. Feel free to add your own ingredients to the mix.
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Old 08-14-2014, 09:41 AM
 
Location: Gorgeous Scotland
4,123 posts, read 4,746,596 times
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Having goals is important, whether it's learning or improving your foreign language skills, learning anything, becoming a more creative photographer/writer/artist, improving skills such as cooking, baking, sewing, golf, tennis, etc etc.

Being physically active and keeping or becoming as fit as possible.

Health and doing whatever you can to get/stay that way.

Money! Money for travel is very important for us as we travel all we can, while we can. No guarantees we'll remain healthy so we travel for a good portion of the year.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:07 AM
 
Location: in the miseries
3,302 posts, read 3,577,670 times
Reputation: 3810
Having goals is important. And also dreams.
Life doesn't end at retirement.
Just a new beginning
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