Why Blog?

As I enter into retirement, I cannot entertain the thought of doing anything. I am excited to begin this blog, to document every experience good or bad that comes my way. My main goal with this blog is to grow a community of like-minded individuals who have retired or are planning to retire so that we can share our experiences to stay engaged and feel valued. I hope to inspire others who may want to retire or leave a job that is not fulfilling you, or maybe you’re not offering them the value they are looking for anymore, either way, it may be time to go.

Becoming a blogger is a way for me to express my thoughts, feelings, and opinions on topics that may make a difference in someone else life, and help you to feel empowered as you work to embrace the aging process, and to stay productive and active. Retiring or leaving a job that does not promote a positive sense of well-being, but is always chaotic or stressful, is one that a person has to evaluate and take action to eliminate as much of it as you can, sometimes it requires drastic action such as seeking other employment. I know that is not what you wanted to hear, but stress has a very negative impact on overall well-being, mental health, and the ability to focus and anything you may be trying to accomplish.

Finding an outlet for stress by writing a blog is one positive way to alleviate it because by writing about what is on your mind, and by talking it out just makes you feel better. Some topics are not pleasant but need to be said, in a positive way to express your feelings about it. If you’re retiring, just think of all the things you can do to re-invent yourself, maybe you don’t like the way you look?, this could be the very thing needed to begin a diet, take up an exercise program, or you might want to just take up a hobby, Imagine that, a hobby, what is that?

Whatever the reason, moving on is not a death sentence, but a time of reflection and internal dialog with yourself, maybe it’s time to change what you’re telling yourself, and become a more confident, assertive person, or maybe it’s just time to change the view of your life and move close to family or friends that inspire you to be the best version of yourself. Take time to invest in prayer, let it guide you to where ever life may be taking you, and don’t ever be afraid to take action as soon as possible, because if you wait when you feel the tug to leave or move from where you are, it could cost you in the end.

In closing, don’t let circumstances dictate your life, I am a perfect example of letting that very thing happen., I stayed in jobs or situations that I knew I needed to leave, but stayed out of guilt or necessity, and now as I reflect on the past, I am finding there were benefits of continuing on, but in hindsight,  I should have made an exit plan earlier. So with that…

Until Next Blog, Be Inspired

Leslie

 

What My Blog means to me!

People create blogs for many reasons, to showcase their creativity, in food, fashion, beauty, etc. I started my blog because I wanted to bring into focus a subject that gets a lot of attention on the internet,it is mentioned and encouraged at our workplaces, but many people do not realize just how important planning for retirement really is. It’s not just about the money.. no, it is so much more than that, it’s about making sure that all of your financial ducks are in a row, and making sure that your family members have instructions on what is to be done if you should die.

I am planing to leave the workforce and retire at the beginning of 2019, and if I had not prepared for this moment, It  would be not have been possible, because I would still need money to survive, being able to retire early does not happen by chance, it takes years of mental and financial planning, from an everyday Budget to manage monthly income , to Retirement and  Estate Planning,  which I have put all of these things in place for this moment when I can say good-bye to the Corporate world, and move into the next phase of my life. I am so excited, that I am finally here and am anticipating its arrival.

Since I began working I’ve  always had a focus on retirement , but for the longest time I just could not seem to gain momentum because of circumstances that I thought were beyond my control would get in the way. In my 30’s I got a divorce, had troubled kids, and still found the courage to get a good paying job that would take care of us, and afford me the ability to set aside some cash for retirement, but there was still a hurdle to jump over, I could not invest for 5 years, because I was not eligible to participate until I had been with the company for 5 years. When that time came, I began a 457 plan and began depositing  3% at first,  the company policy was they would match my contribution. For every 3 dollars I would invest, they would give me 2. I thought that was a pretty good deal, and it paid off. As time went on I would increase my contribution with every raise I got.

I continued to work, and after many years, 21 1/2 as a matter of fact, I found another job I wanted to take in the same field, so I accepted the job and moved to Oregon. When I left, i started taking my pension from the previous company, I could not see a reason to wait, which I am glad I did it this way  When I started the job in Oregon, I started a 457 plan again and began to save as much as I could for how ever long I was going to work here plus their pension plan began immediately, it was a 401b plan,  which they deposited a determined amount every month.

It is approaching 26 1/2 years, and I am hanging up my hat, but I don’t plan to stop working, I created this blog, to help others to understand the importance of Planning for this day, to be able to make the transition as smoothly as possible. With all of this being said, you don’t know what tomorrow will bring, and we can’t control how the economy will respond to what’s going on in the world, but we can make our  plan for today, to make tomorrow easier if it’s at all possible.

Until next blog

Leslie

 

 

 

 

What stage of life are you Filtering into?

What FILTER do you wear!

I was messing around on Instagram yesterday, and I took a selfie picture of myself, (because I was bored), and I tried out all of the filters that were available. When I came across this on I did a double take because it made me look so different. I was amazed at the difference in what was displayed in the picture, and what I really look like, and I thought how good that filter made me look. It was sure a change from what I really looked like, just coming from work and all, It was quite refreshing. I shared it on all of the social media outlets as usual, and got many responses of how good it looked. Of course I was feeling pretty good about then, and for most of the night.

Later in the evening as I was getting ready to turn in for the night, I washed my face , brushed the teeth, put on face cream, (trying to preserve my youthfulness), LOL! I crawled into bed and settled in, I was determined to get that beauty sleep that everyone keeps saying I need. A couple of hours later, as sleep eluded me, I began to think about that selfie with the filter on it that made me look so good for a minute. I thought about how the years are beginning to go by faster and faster, and my youthfulness is now beginning to turn into shades of grey, as my hair turns white, my body expands, which seems to be beyond my control, and my mind is not probably what it once was. That one filter made me seem young for a few more fleeting minute.

Now, please don’t take this to be a sad post, but it is a post about stepping on to a new and different stage, to learn to play a new role in life, that is the every bit as exciting as the others were, but the play is a slower paced one that will require that every scene be performed with excellence and every step precise. I am now dancing to the tune of a different drummer, and as the sun begins to make its way behind me and the aging process rapidly moves me forward, I am glad to say that I embrace everyday that is given to me forever, Oh I may not think about it every day, but on most days I will learn to be grateful for the things I have been fortunate to have, but I am learning that life is not all about things, but experience, wisdom, and discernment of life lessons that give us the courage to embrace that wisdom that experience has taught, weather easy or difficult.

In closing this blog, I have to say that looking back on my life, I would not change a thing, If presented to me again, I would probably make the same decisions again, I just would hope the circumstances might be different. I am only 59 so I hope that God will grant me many more years, but if not I will face the future with courage, because getting old is not for the faint of heart,  As a wise man once said. “Favor is deceitful, and beauty is vain; but a woman who feareth the Lord, she shall be praised.” Solomon ( The Bible, Proverbs 31:30),

Why I am Choosing to Retire Early

 

This year will mark an exciting time for me. I am preparing and planning to retire in a few short months from today at 591/2. I know that most people wait until they are 62 or 65 to retire, waiting for their Pensions to get bigger, or Social Security benefits to get the maximum benefit possible. As for me, I am not sure that Social Security will be available when I turn 65, and Medicare, well that’s another blog post for another day.

I personally am not choosing to wait but will document my journey as I 2018 comes to a close and 2019 begins in full swing, I believe there is more to life than working a job you don’t enjoy.

If you’re in a job that is not fulfilling, and you feel that you need to enter another chapter in your life, it may be time to start thinking about other alternatives. With a little research and planning, you may be able to leave and do what fulfills you. I don’t intend to stop working, but to pursue things that bring joy to my life. I am excited about what is to come. Please engage In the conversation, What are your plans for your retirement? How do you plan to accomplish your goals to get there?

Until the next blog

Leslie

It is Important to take care of your Health as you approach retirement

As we get closer to Retirement, it is so important to take care of our health. When I was researching my Health care insurance options, one question I was asked by all of the agents is, ” Do you have any pre-existing conditions”? I was fortunate to be able to tell them no, which I thank God that I am healthy because I think it was going to affect my premiums.

With every change healthcare rules, it is more important now than ever before to be aware of your health. Spend some time daily to take that walk or get that eight hours of sleep, lift the weight to strengthen your bones, ladies and gentlemen, it will be to your benefit later.

Habits, take the time to create those healthy habits, spend time working on your stress levels, It does make all of the difference. It does not matter how you do it, just do it.

Until Next Blog, Be happy and stay healthy.

Leslie