What to Do When Retirement Doesn't Feel Like a Choice

What to Do When Retirement Doesn't Feel Like a Choice

by Ben Simiskey on Sep 2, 2020

Emergency Preparedness, Retirement

In their August 2020 Employment Situation news release, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 1.8 million in July, and the unemployment rate fell to 10.2 percent. While encouraging, the increase in employment was less than both June (4.8 million) and May (2.7 million). And nonfarm employment in July is still 12.9 million (or 8.4 percent) lower than its February level.


While there is much debate about how to address current employment levels, there is little debate about how significant the numbers are. Millions of Americans have lost their jobs in 2020. Some have found new jobs while millions more continue searching.


Unfortunately, as the economic impact of COVID-19 continues to take its toll, and as the effects of the previously passed stimulus packages wear off, it appears many more will be facing the loss of their jobs as the year presses on. A swath of Americans in this predicament have been forced to consider taking early retirement. If you’re one of those, what are some of the factors you need to consider?


Charles Schwab outlines the following 6 steps to take in that situation:


  1. Think strategically about pension and Social Security benefits
  2. Pressure test your 401(k)
  3. Don’t forget about health insurance
  4. Match expenses to income
  5. Protect your portfolio
  6. Reevaluate your current spending


Each of those steps is critical to ensuring your financial life doesn’t get upended, and that article gives you a base of information to get started. But in addition to the financial considerations, you have to ask yourself if you’re ready to retire – physically, mentally, emotionally and socially. And all of these conversations should, of course, involve your spouse or significant other. You may be ready for retirement, but they may not be. Or vice versa.


Throughout it all, look for people who can help you analyze, process and move forward – whether that’s family members, close friends, mental health professionals, financial professionals or others. We often help our clients and contacts do just that. If you’d like to have that conversation, please don’t hesitate to contact us today.