When people discuss retirement, there are so many images that come to mind. It's a unique experience, as different as each person. There is no rigid rule book about what makes an enjoyable retirement and I think this is one of the most exciting things about it. The number of people aged 65 and older has increased by 16% in just 10 years which means there are nearly one million more people taking on new adventures.
Perhaps this is going to be a slow process, it certainly seems that way. I'm trying my best to fill that void and find that meaning in my life and I hope that what I am trying to create with the interests I have off field form together to fill that void. They need to as it feels pretty big at the moment.
Whilst the money side of retirement is obviously very important to people, it's not the be all and end all - yet finances seems to be the focus of ALL the attention. As any retirees will know, and perhaps even more so any of you that are in the lead up to your retirement, there is plenty to worry about besides money.
Although retirement is viewed as an individual experience, it has an enormous impact on marital relationships. In the initial stages of retirement there is a kind of honeymoon period where couples rate their marriages more favorably, they have better sex lives, and feel their relationships have actually improved. It doesn't last.
Six weeks ago, I played my last professional game of rugby. The chapter of my life that started with my debut at Newcastle at the age of 19, ended at 36 in Oxford with the final shrill of a referee's whistle. Just like that, Tom May, London Welsh captain became Tom May former rugby player. So what now?
Why on earth would you want to cash in your entire pension pot at age 55 when all the statistics point to you living well into your 80s? For many people, the answer is that you would be crazy to do so - you should leave the pot alone to let it grow and be thankful you will have a pension to fall back on when you reach 65.