Recently, the Employee Benefit Research Institute released their 2013 Retirement Confidence Survey and the results aren’t unexpected. About half of the people surveyed have no or little confidence that they will have enough money to retire comfortably.
Personally, I think most workers are too caught up in the present and haven’t thought much about retirement. It’s such a long way off, so why worry about it? It’s hard enough to make ends meet every month. This is a mistake because time flies and we’ll all be old before we know it.
Getting old isn’t a very pleasant process so that’s probably why most young people avoid thinking about it. I’m just 39 and I’m already slowing down quite a bit. Recently, I’ve been spending more time with my parents and that makes getting old an even worse prospect. My mom is trying to deal with glaucoma and complications from a cataract surgery and it’s very tiresome. She has been going to see doctors all over town. In the end, they decided to not do anything. Surgery will be too risky so they’ll just have to keep an eye on it and control the problem with eye drops.
I know retirement isn’t much fun to think about, but we need to face it head on or else you’ll be one of the many people with no confidence when the time come. Here is a tool from Merrill Edge that might help you face reality – Face Retirement. You can take a snapshot of yourself with your laptop’s camera and then the software will age your face. The idea is if you see what you look like at 67, it will be more real to you and you’ll be more proactive about retirement planning and saving.
Here I am at 39 and 67
OK, I cheated a bit and firmed up my 67 year old cheeks just a little with the edit photo feature. Sagging cheeks aren’t our family’s trait. So does this make me want to save more for retirement? I’m not sure. I already make retirement saving a priority, so I don’t think it makes much of a difference to me. It actually makes me think that I should enjoy life while I’m still relatively young.
I don’t mean spending more money; I mean just being happy, enjoying time with my family and trying to have as much fun as possible. It’s just my opinion, but I think it’s harder to do a lot of things when you’re 67. We love traveling and it would probably be more difficult to do big long trips when we’re older. I think we’ll try to get our big long trips out of the way in our 50’s and take shorter trips after 67.
Whoa, I’m scary at 107! I don’t think I’ll have to worry about it though. My male relatives usually don’t live to that age. I would be lucky to make it to 80 with my genetics, but I guess you never know because health care is improving every day.
Getting wrinkly isn’t going to be fun, but why don’t you try it out and let me know what you think. What comes to mind when you look at your future self? Does it give you a push to save a little more for retirement?