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John Higgins

The “M” Word in Retirement

Mindfulness - Photo by Esther Wilhelmsson via Unsplash

The most important factor to living a happy retirement starts with the
letter “M.” And it’s not “Money.” Yet at the commencement of all our
retirement planning courses the money factor sits large on the minds of
attendees. In fact, as we prepare for starting the course I have more than
once been approached by the first comer into the lecture room and asked
“Are you the Pensions Man?”

You shouldn’t ignore money. It is important. It may be the one thing that
preserves the “living” part of “living a contented retirement.” But it is
not the most important thing to think about when planning for a life in
retirement. While money helps pay for many important matters, the idea of
the unpredictability of your future health provides you a clue as to what
that most important “M” word is. To be truly happy the secret is in Continue Reading

Healthy Ireland and Life Expectancy

Healthy Living

The Healthy Ireland policy document entitled Framework for Improved Health and Wellbeing 2013 -2015 is the government’s plan to improve the health and wellbeing of the nation. So how are we faring mid-way through the lifetime of the plan?

The mid-term report entitled Health in Ireland: Key Trends (2017) revealed that 70% of men and 57% of women are overweight or obese. This also reflects the lack of a personal physical exercise regime whereby only 46% of men and 62% of women are termed “physically active”. All of this reflects significantly on our birth to death life expectancy ratio.

Between 2007 and 2017 the following increases in Life Expectancy are recorded: Continue Reading

Emotional Preparation for Retirement Life: Identity Issues

Perhaps no other stage of life triggers such intense feelings of excitement and liberation, on the one hand, but, on the other, fear and anxiety. Retirement for many entails a leap of faith after decades of routine. You’re not simply at work Friday, doing your job, and retired Monday, dancing for joy. Retirement is a major transition that unfolds over many years, as we move from the life we know, into the life we will get to know.

Most people don’t realise that psychological and emotional readiness is as important as all the concerns about financial issues in retirement. I have personally witnessed attendees on arrival for a course to ask me “are you the pension’s man”; in other words: I am here to hear about my pension; about money issues and that is all that concerns me so just tell me about how I’m going to survive financially. By the time our course is over attendees realise that while money issues are important, there is a whole lot more to consider about an emotional ‘glide path’ into a life in retirement. So our key message is Continue Reading