Posted by Flora Maudsley-Barton | August 19, 2009
What’s been around will come around?
We don’t save enough. State pensions aren’t enough to live comfortably on. So what can I look forward to, as a thirty-something?
Here’s what I think.
Why are we so desperate to retire early? I don’t think we’re designed to rest for a third of our lifetimes, and our life expectancy continues to get longer. Even our “active” lives are getting longer, that is, before too many bits of us stop working entirely.
So, again, why are we so desperate to retire younger?
Is it because we work too hard? We work really hard when we’re young, trying to get together tons of money so that we can stop working just before we get old. It doesn’t make sense really.
I think it makes more sense to accept that we’ll have to work into our seventies (then maybe our eighties and nineties), but spread out the effort as well. What might that mean, in practice?
Working moderately, perhaps saving less because we’re not fixed on saving it all for a life in the sun. Like our grandparents did?
Does it sound a bit dull? Doesn’t that depend on what we choose to do while we’re not working?
That makes sense to me, but maybe I’m just an idealist with my own business, so I can say “no” without fear of losing my job. I enjoy what I do, so the thought of having to keep doing it doesn’t bother me too much.
The real problem may be that there aren’t enough jobs to keep us all busy. But that’s another post, surely?
If you agree, or even if you disagree, tell me what you think?