Mental preparation for retirement

By FMB on 

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A study undertaken by the Professional Players Federation. notes that sports people struggle with mental health issues after they retire from their sporting career. One in two of the 800 respondents experienced “loss, regret or devastation”.

I heard AP McCoy on Radio 4 this morning talking about the sadness he still feels when he remembers his last race and the struggle he has experienced from the loss of purpose and structure since he retired from racing.

For most of us, our jobs do not include adrenalin fuelled rollercoasters of intense training, success, defeat and the adulation that comes with celebrity. We do however get a certain sense of meaning and purpose from the feeling of a job well done. We define ourselves though our work roles and create support networks amongst our colleagues. So although, sports people have a heightened sense of loss when they retire, they are not alone. Fortunately some are young enough to replace the void with a second career. For those of us in everyday jobs we can still succumb to depression or at least a sense of bereavement about the passing of an era.

As financial planners we are tasked with guiding people to a financially secure retirement but we also want to help our clients to achieve a fruitful retirement. It’s important to discuss how the mental preparation for this new stage can be helpful in managing the transition.

Clinical Psychologist Shelly Rubenstein helped some of our clients last year to consider how they would replace the structure of work, think about how retirement might affect their relationships and how they could find meaning using their talents and skills to help others.

Some people can’t wait to retire and they are lucky enough to have the means to do whatever they desire. But what if you don’t know what you desire, you might make choices about how to fill your time that are harmful or destructive? Many retired sportspeople develop addictions to fill the void or recreate the high of success.

Working with a financial planner helps make life transitions easier, not just because the money side of things can be boxed off – you can also talk to them about how you feel about the changes. You will find that your financial planner has a wealth of experience because they will have helped many people in this situation before. Here at FMB our team undertake training to give them the tools, techniques and coaching skills to help clients through difficult times such as illness, bereavement and loss.

When people ask, "what is the difference between a Financial Planner and a Financial Adviser?" this is one of those differences. A Financial Planner will not just sell you a pension, they will work with you year in, year out to make sure you make the right decisions for all aspects of your wellbeing, not just your finances.

To discuss how we help clients to live better lives, please give us a call on 01593 725855 or drop us a line. We don't charge for a first meeting and we listen confidentially without judgement. The kettle is on....

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