Adventurer or Retreater: What’s Your Retirement Path?

In Nancy Schlossberg’s new book, Too Young to Be Old, she outlines six primary paths followed by retirees.  Will you be a ‘Continuer’, engaging in some activities similar to those during your career, only without the income?  An ‘Adventurer’, chasing an unrealized dream or interest?  A ‘Searcher’, walking a multitude of paths, trying to find a niche that works?  A ‘Retreater’, taking time to relax, decompress, and just be?  And so on…

As you progress through your working life, take a moment to contemplate each of the scenarios researched by Ms. Schlossberg.  Why now?  Each option has a financial profile, and thus can affect your target retirement nest egg.   For instance, the ‘Continuer’ and ‘Retreater’ likely spend less in the early retirement years relative to their working years than the ‘Adventurer’ and ‘Searcher’, who incur new expenses following or determining their interests.  Have you heard that the average person spends about 75% of their pre-retirement income in retirement?  In actuality, research by Morningstar (Estimating the True Cost of Retirement, 2013) shows that the spending range is quite wide, from under 54% to over 87%.  It can be of great advantage in your financial plan to project where on that spectrum you will fall.  If you’re going to be The Most Interesting Man in the World, paddling across the Atlantic Ocean in a solar kayak…. you’re going to need to pay for it.  Let’s start planning now.

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