After a fruitful career spanning decades, retirement is a phase of life many look forward to. Not having to put in overtime, deal with a bad boss, play office politics, and face demanding clients is an appealing proposition. More importantly, you now have a whole new world of possibilities ahead of you.
Contrary to popular belief, enjoying your retirement isn't a guarantee. Among the elderly in Singapore, there is a growing and concerning trend of depression arising from physical and mental illness, financial problems and relationship issues.
For retirement to be a bed of roses, you need to remove the thorns that get in the way. Here are 5 tips to help make the most of your well-deserved golden years.
# 1 Mentally prepared for your golden years
Our jobs provide us with more than a pay check – they give us a sense of purpose, keep us engaged in a social circle, and enable us to gain a sense of accomplishment.
In retirement, you need to accept the fact that your position and career that you've worked so hard for is now a closed chapter in your life. That does not mean that you no longer have purpose, friends or anything left to achieve.
Seen with the right perspective, a brand-new chapter of your life is now ahead of you, one that can be every bit as exhilarating and fulfilling as the last, if not more. You need to mentally prepare for retirement just as you prepared for each phase of your life that passed, including when you were building your career.
# 2 Ensure your financial and protection needs are taken care of
With rising quality of life and advancements in medical technology, the average life expectancy of Singaporeans is increasing, with many expecting themselves to live to age 100.
Increasing life expectancy in Singapore also has implications on your financial planning. A key one is whether your retirement savings will last your lifespan. Imagine being at the tail end of your retirement savings, and realising you are going to be short.
AIA Retirement Saver (IV) offers policyholders the flexibility to take charge of their retirement. Depending on their retirement needs, policyholders will be guaranteed a monthly retirement income as well as be able to rest easy knowing their contributions are guaranteed.
The earlier you plan for retirement, the more time and options you have to ensure you can enjoy a comfortable retirement.
Another area you need to carefully plan is your healthcare. While you were working, you had regular Medisave contributions from yourself and your employer. This dries up once you stop earning an income.
Singaporeans and PRs can use part of their Medisave to pay for their MediShield Life premiums as well as their Integrated Shield premiums for private care. Once you retire, you may want to relook your coverage levels, especially if you have to fork out a hefty cash component for private medical coverage.
The AIA HealthShield Gold Max, as well as the AIA Max Essential rider, provides comprehensive coverage levels to suit diverse individual needs.
# 3 Invest in your health
To enjoy every day to the fullest, you need to be in good health. In general, this means eating well, having quality sleep, and being physically active. It may sound counter-intuitive, but the more sedentary you are, the lesser energy you would actually have, and the more injury-prone you will be.
Rather than regard exercise as a chore, you can make it fun by joining classes or exercise groups, or better yet, involve your partner and even other family members. Exercising with your loved ones can be a great way to bond.
You can also make use of AIA Vitality, which is a science-backed wellness programme that encourages and rewards you for making healthier lifestyle choices, such as walking 10,000 steps a day or joining a gym.
If you indeed become unwell, AIA has got you covered too. We launched a new initiative to help our members through their most testing times, when they are facing a serious medical condition.
AIA is driven to offer a comprehensive and compelling healthcare proposition, by enabling policyholders to obtain the right diagnosis as efficiently as possible, ensuring they have access to optimal treatments and support throughout their treatment and recovery journey. In our partnership with Teladoc Health, AIA VitalHealth A, AIA Max VitalCare, AIA Max Essential A and A Saver policyholders now have complimentary access to personal case management services.
# 4 Widen your social circle
In addition to your physical well-being, your social needs are also crucial for an active, happy and fulfilling retirement. We all need people whom we can rely on to spend our golden years with.
Though you are retired, it is still valuable to maintain friendships with your former colleagues and business associates.
As someone seasoned with rich experiences, you have a lot to offer the people around you and the larger community. Continue contributing and participating on a larger scale by sharing your knowledge and insights with your family members, volunteer at a community centre or non-profit organisation, or if you're digitally savvy, you could even share your thoughts in a blog or YouTube channel.
You never know whose life you might positively impact!
# 5 Set goals and achieve them
Just because you're not working doesn't mean you shouldn't have aspirations, ambition or goals. In fact, while you were working, you probably had many such aspirations, ambition and goals outside of work that you wanted to achieve. This includes places to visit, skills to learn, or things to accomplish.
Instead of seeing retirement as a time to slow down, you can instead plan to make full use of your newfound freedom and time during the day to live a more fulfilling life - where you continue growing as a person.
Retirement doesn't have to mean taking a step back from the world, but rather, about taking two steps forward towards what you want to do.
AIA Is your life-long partner
AIA Singapore has a comprehensive range of solutions to cater to your specific health, financial and protection needs at different stages of your life.
With carefully laid plans for your evolving needs, you can look forward to a healthier, longer, better life and a fulfilling retirement.
By ensuring that your retirement planning matters are well taken care of, you can Be Life Confident, knowing that you are prepared for anything life throws at you.