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Practical Planning Tip: Lesson's From My Grandfather - A Fulfilling Retirement

February 02, 2024

Today’s Practical Planning Tip from my grandfather is what it means to haveA fulfilling retirement: My grandfather had a small business selling and installing draperies. He told me that he stopped working when he no longer had the patience to deal with vendors or difficult customers, whom he referred to as “the yentas.” In truth, he was gearing up for his retirement years in advance. He developed a routine of community involvement, attending shiurim (or religious lectures), and visiting family. This daily schedule stayed the same for most of his retirement years.

He also continued to stay curious and well informed, regularly discussing his new stock ideas with me and reading the daily newspaper cover to cover until failing eyesight made him switch to watching cable news at a very high volume. After my grandmother passed away, my grandfather even got a roommate, a graduate student 65 years his junior. During off hours, they had meals and conversations together, which helped him stay “with it” even as an octogenarian and nonagenarian.

I always tell clients that it is essential to retire to something and not from something. The individuals with the most fulfilling retirements maintain a strong social network, a way to stay mentally sharp, and the ability to keep their days structured. My grandfather managed to achieve all three.

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