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What is Happening to "Traditional" Retirement?

Know someone who retired at age 65 and lived out their golden years in paradise with no cares in the world? Well, I used to know people like that, but most of them are dead.

While the growing FIRE (Financial Independence/Retire Early) movement is throwing the traditional age of retirement out the window - with people dedicating themselves to earning and saving enough money to do what that they love as soon as possible - some recent stats, presented by John Diehl of the Hartford Funds at the Annual Meeting of the Retirement Advisor Council, paint a far different picture of older Americans than what was once considered “traditional” retirement.

  • Two-thirds of new retirees feel lost, anxious, or bored
  • 24% of Uber drivers are over age 50; earning money is NOT their number-one reason for driving!
  • Most divorces of seniors are initiated by women, due to boredom
  • Money is the THIRD most important reason why older Americans remain employed
  • Psychological well-being doesn’t peak until age 82 (if you live that long)
  • Even in some industries, where people may wish to traditionally retire, the labor shortage is actually resulting in employers incentivizing employees to keep working (e.g., truck drivers, where the current shortage is approximately 50,000 workers)

Fun stuff, huh? As Mr. Diehl put it, traditional retirement is being replaced by the idea of “what comes next?”

This is one of the many reasons that I am in favor of changing the term “retirement” to “financial independence.”Retirement, in the traditional sense, is associated with dying. It is becoming more rare for people to go from working full-time to solely recreation (which, apparently, can cause them to feel lost, anxious, or bored!). Think of it like this: you’re not saving for retirement; you’re saving to do what you want to in life. And retirement/financial independence plan sponsors need to plan accordingly.

Is “traditional” retirement on the way out? Let me know your thoughts on LinkedIn, Twitter or at !

Note: This feature is to provide general information only, does not constitute legal advice, and cannot be used or substituted for legal or tax advice. Opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily represent the opinions of Cammack Retirement Group.

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