Is an expat retirement your dream? 3 things to plan for before making the move

If your wildest dreams came true, where would you choose to live your retirement? Interestingly not all of us would choose to remain where we are even if it meant being further away from loved ones.

Whilst endless summers, brisk mountain air or simply living debt free may seem like nothing more than a pipe dream, a retirement abroad is becoming more common than you may realise.

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Will your health allow your dream retirement to become a reality?

For many people, this end of the year will be more exciting than usual as not only is the festive season almost upon us but it signals their decision to retire as well. This might be you. You have saved well and are confident that your financial position will enable you to do all of those things you dream of when work no longer consumes your waking hours! But what about your health, have you prioritised your health in planning for retirement?

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What are your non-negotiables in retirement?

The wonderful thing about retirement is that the Baby Boomers finally have the opportunity to become the ‘Me-Timers’. After balancing a busy career, family and social commitments for so many years, they finally get to focus on the things that light them up. That might mean learning to play the saxophone (I’ve only had the darn thing 20 years!), selling up and making that tree change, or trekking through Patagonia.

I am a strong advocate for possibility thinking, living one’s dreams and creating a full and exciting retirement, but I also want to ensure that people approaching retirement are set up for success. I want to ensure that their dreams and goals are achievable.

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When retirement has a negative impact on your mental health...

There are a number of reports which indicate that retirement can have a negative impact on your mental health. That the loss of status, connection, identity and drive can lead to depression, and that this is particularly prevalent amongst men. This is not surprising given that retirement represents a significant life change and can result in much upheaval to life as we know it. It does, however, beg the question is the transition into retirement the sole catalyst for poorer mental health or is there something else at play?

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How Feeling Old Can Work Against You In Retirement

How old do you feel today? Younger or older than your driver’s licence says? As the old adage goes ‘you are only as old as you feel’ and this is particularly important when it comes to getting the most out of life in retirement.  The people who feel productive, happy and content in retirement tend to be those who have a zest for life and feel young at heart. To them age is simply a number.

The research suggests that those who see themselves as old are more likely to experience declining health more quickly, both physically and psychologically, and thus lead a ‘smaller’ retirement.

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How can yoga help you bring your retirement plans to life?

To the men out there! If you knew that yoga could benefit your retirement plans and goals, would you give it a go? Whilst it seems that almost every Gen Y-er and millennial owns a yoga mat and has a favourite class, there is much trepidation surrounding yoga for many Baby Boomers. Worries abound such as how to get your body to bend like that, what to do when you enter a class, and the ultimate fear of falling asleep and snoring! Men in particular tend to be sceptical, perhaps because they worry about looking silly or a little too much in touch with their feminine side.

Before you laugh it off, can I ask you to do a quick self-assessment – how’s your quality of sleep, what’s your mobility like and how easily does your body allow you to do your everyday tasks? If you toss and turn during the night or worry about how you are going to jump in and out of that 4X4, set up the camper trailer or take long hikes in retirement, yoga might be just the thing for you!

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How forgiveness benefits your health

Holding onto anger can never be a good thing. By the time we reach the retirement age it is inevitable that at some stage we have been hurt by actions or words of another. But holding onto that grudge requires much energy and over time this can pose problems for our physical health. There are real benefits to embracing the path of forgiveness

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Retirement Questions for the New Year

If you are retired or have spoken with friends who have retired, you quickly learn that there is more to retirement planning than just your superannuation balance. Without a doubt good, robust financial planning is critical to positioning yourself for greatest flexibility in deciding how and when you will retire, but the health and wellbeing elements are just as vital.

So why not take a few moments at the beginning of the year (now!) to focus on what will be important to you and what you’d like to change or improve in the coming year. From a wellbeing perspective, what will enable you to look back in twelve months and confidently say you enjoyed a year that was fulfilling and meaningful to you?

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Health Focus: How your GP can help as you prepare for life in retirement

We all know that it’s important to see your GP for regular check-ups and I’m pretty sure that there are plenty of us out there who think ‘I’ll make that appointment next week’ and suddenly six months passes before you realise that you still haven’t visited your GP. As the adage goes, prevention is better than cure and in this week’s blog Sunshine Coast GP Dr Ruth Nash shares her insight and tips into healthcare and ageing, along with some great services which you may not know your GP offers (often for free!).

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Health Focus: Why yoga is for everyone – especially those approaching retirement!

 This week’s blog continues the focus on health and well-being and following the insights from personal trainer Gemma Cuskelly last week, I am thrilled to introduce Marita Nicholson, Tullamore yoga instructor.

Marita not only attended a yoga class for the first time in her mid-forties, but went even further and enacted a career change, becoming a yoga instructor. She proves that it’s true – you can make a successful career change at any stage in life! Marita shares her advice and learnings, debunking the myth that yoga is a young person’s pursuit only!

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Focus: Health & Well-Being in Retirement - Top Tips from Personal Trainer Gemma Cuskelly

"What if I lose my health and can't enjoy my retirement"

This is a theme that comes up in a number of the conversations I have and in response to this, I have created a Focus Series on Health and Well-Being. For three consecutive weeks, this blog will focus on key elements of staying healthy and active.

I am teaming up with three inspiring women to provide expert advice and insights as guests of the blog.

To kick off the Health & Wellbeing Focus Series, I have the pleasure of introducing Gemma Cuskelly, Owner and Director at F1rst Class Fitness. She share her insights and advice for women planning for retirement and wanting to improve their fitness level but might be hesitant about joining a gym (aren't they all full of body-building gorillas?!?!).

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