It is July, and for many teachers, it is the long, slow, drawn-out weeks before the summer holidays. For others, retirement comes with the end of this school year, and life is likely to change dramatically. Retirement has different meanings for people. Some will want to continue working and will have lined up opportunities outside the teaching profession. Others will hang up the work clothes for good and seek out new hobbies and travel possibilities.
As you can see, retirement is more than financial. There are choices to be made about what your retirement means for you. Waiting to see how retirement will transpire could leave you feeling lost and lacking purpose.
Here we begin by talking about preparing emotionally for your retirement.
Is retirement nirvana?
The first thing to prepare emotionally for retirement is to manage your expectations and keep the opinion of others in perspective. People assume that not being forced to work every day and doing exactly what you want is a form of heaven on earth. There are no early mornings and no work at the weekends.
However, without a plan, you could be left staring at four walls without a sense of what you’re meant to do with your time. While you will still need to run your house, it is hard to parley washing up and going to the supermarket into a reason for living.
So, rather than allow the common opinion about retirement to descend on you, think that you will want to plan what you are going to do with your time.
Other ways to find friends
One thing we forget is that work is where we make most of our friends. While we will keep these friends into retirement, we won’t see them every day. Therefore, maintaining these connections becomes more complex, and your social circle will shrink.
It is a great idea to join an evening class or start inviting people over for coffee to maintain your connection with other people.
What have you always wanted to do?
Finally, embrace those things that you have always wanted to do but never had the time. Have you always wanted to learn how to play the piano, write a book, travel the lengths of the UK in a motorhome – whatever it is you have yearned for, this is your time. Be purposeful about putting this into action and searching for those moments of fulfilment.
Emotional more than financial!
In the coming weeks, we will explore the more financial considerations of retirement. However, right now in the weeks leading up to the end of the summer term, we suggest starting a conversation with a buddy about how you are going to make retirement work for you.
The content in this article was correct on 29th June 2021. You should not rely on this article to make important financial decisions. Teachers Financial Planning offers advice on the different types of retirement available with the Teachers’ Pension Scheme. Please use the contact form below to arrange an informal chat with an advisor and see how we can help you.