Some Things Can Actually Get Better With Age; Planning financially for retirement can help make aging more comfortable
Yes, there are good things about being older, such as increased happiness, less stress, better marriages and deeper friendships.
I’m in my early 60s and when my 20-something children tell me I’m getting old, my now familiar response to them has become, “Yes, that’s the plan!”
While it seems true that what was defined as “old” as little as 20 years ago might not seem “old” now; regardless of our definition, though, we’re going to be slowing down physically. What is important to remember, though, is that our expenses don’t necessarily slow down with us.
One of the biggest threats to a retirement nest egg, besides the possibility of outliving it, is the high cost of care for increasing health needs.
Things Get Better With Age
An article in Consumer Reports on Health found there are some things that actually get better with age:
1. You get wiser. Research conducted by the Universities of Texas and Michigan found that significantly more older people ranked in the top 20% in wisdom performance, and the group with an average age of 65 consistently outperformed younger participants.
Maybe there's some truth to the joke about parents seeming to get smarter as their kids get older.
2. You have fewer difficult emotions. A Gallup survey found that people in their 70s and 80s reported less stress, worry, and anger than younger respondents. Stress peaks at age 25 and steadily declines, dropping rapidly from 60 to 73. Perhaps we have something to look forward to!
3. You become happier. A study by Stanford and Tufts University professors said that aging is associated with increased emotional well-being.
4. Your marriage gets better. The Journal of Social and Personal Relationships found that older couples experience greater satisfaction and positive experiences with each other. The report also says happily married older people have better health, quality of life, and relationships with their children and friends.
This may well be a case of what statisticians call selection bias, as perhaps only the better marriages actually last into old age these days; but it does give one something to think about.
5. Your relationships get deeper and richer. While younger people have more friends, the quality of older people's relationships becomes richer. A study done by Case Western Reserve University found that volunteering was the most consistent predictor of cognitive well-being in people over age 72.
Consult Your Team
While there can be much to enjoy about a long(er) life, one key to keeping it as financially secure as possible is to keep in contact with your financial advisory team. Just like your physician and other medical experts can help keep your body working at its best (for its age), so too can your financial advisor and their team help you enjoy the security that can contribute to some of that less stressful living that awaits you!
Please feel free to contact us at Grey Ledge Advisors if you think we can help you in any way.