As a financial advice column, we’re dedicated to providing our readers with recommendations, tips, and guidance for how to navigate through the financial aspects of life. We’re apt to offer advice on ways to save money, make wise investments, stick to a budget, and improve your credit score. In this article, we’re going to digress just a wee bit—we’ll still be addressing retirement planning and saving, but instead of getting into specifics about how much you ought to have saved, and where it should be delegated to, we’re going to try on a different type of retirement advice.
Ann Brenoff of the Huffington Post brought up a very, very good point in her latest article, “On the Fly: When Less is More in Retirement.” She stated that it’s all well and good that we work diligently to save up enough to live comfortably in retirement, and it’s really wise to begin this process early in life (read: in our twenties as opposed to forties.)
But the really intriguing part of her article came when she mentioned the improbability of “Old Thinking” coming true. That is to say, the belief that retirement savings should consist of simply replicating one’s paycheck, and doing this for however many years a person plans on being retired for. Brenoff predicts that nobody is going to have enough money to retire this way, thus ushering in the “New Thinking” mindset of being happier with less. Brenoff states that if we start working right now on reducing the “stuff” from our life, and train ourselves to be happier with less, we’ll have no need for the multi-million dollar retirement account that we are surely never going to be able to save up for anyway.
We love the line where Brenoff encourages readers to “lower the bar on our spending, discern our needs from our wants, and teach ourselves to value what we have instead of mourn the loss of what we can no longer afford.” FinanceSpectrum.com loves the simple rule with the dramatic affect, and mimics Brenoff in promoting this type of thinking. Are we by any means suggesting that you stop funding your IRA? No way, José. What we are suggesting is that if you can reduce your monthly spending now, and be happier with less extravagance, fewer dinners out, and a smaller amount of stuff, you’ll not only save money in the meantime but you’ll set yourself up for great joy in your golden years.