Planning for the Prime Years of Life

With the stock market sinking daily, it’s hard for many investors to stomach the thought of putting money back into the market. That’s totally understandable. As a short-term strategy, many people are keeping their cash in money market accounts or short term savings accounts. If that helps you sleep at night, then that’s what you need to do. But eventually, things will stabilize, markets will go back up, and you’ll need to start planning for your prime years. With average life expectancy at 90, earning less than 2% on your investments over the long term is a riskier strategy than you might imagine.

The largest trend that I see emerging among baby boomers is early semi-retirement. Early semi-retirement in essence is having enough savings to provide a strong foundation and cushion for the future and working part-time to cover the majority of your living expenses. How much is enough? How much do you need to earn to have a richer fuller life? Well that’s the type of number crunching I love to do. In the next couple of months, I am going to expand on this topic and focus my practice heavily on helping people reach this milestone.

Yes, this may involve downsizing your lifestyle. It may mean living not just within your means but perhaps below your means. Following the 9 steps in Your Money or Your Life, you’ll learn all about living well while living below your means. But here’s the thing, what if in return for developing a new financial road map of how you will reach the finish line, you’re not looking at just surviving but thriving.

Think about all the dreaming you do when you’re on vacation. Remember how by the second or third day, you’re reminded about all the things you said you were going to do with your life? And you promise yourself, that when you get back home, things are going to change. Then life happens and your dreams and aspirations get put off for another year, or maybe forever. Here’s your opportunity to change all that. What if instead of working full-time from 45-65, you look at working part-time from 50-72? Imagine how much life you can live with all that extra time. Imagine how much richer, fuller, more fulfilled your life could be if you set course for a new way forward.

Is it scary to let yourself dream about a life that feels so much more in alignment with who you are and what you’re here to do for this short visit on planet earth? You bet it is. But what’s more scary is leading a life of quiet desperation, always wondering what if….

Mark Twain said it best: Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bow lines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore Dream Discover.

Mark Zaifman


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