The real estate investment experience can be enormously rewarding; not just financially, but in personal enrichment. Investing teaches us a great many things about economics, customer service, and money management. It’s a wealth of information that we’ll likely be able to pass on to the next generation to help spark their success.
But really, when it comes down to it, most of us are in real estate investment for one primary, ultimate reason: financial freedom.
We want to not only eliminate debt, but have enough to retire comfortably — maybe with enough to check all of the items off of our bucket list. But really, it’s not that easy.
Because honestly—freedom can be scary. Finally quitting your job can be scary. It’s ingrained in us to earn and strive for more, more, more. Stopping can be a strange prospect, and you can only be content to lounge on the beach for so long. So what will you do with your financial freedom? What will you do when your day job is gone? You’ve got passive income coming in. You have a list of things you want to do. But then what? What will you do with all of you time, money, and energy?
4 Questions to Ask Yourself About Your Retirement
What Am I Passionate About?
So many of us root our identity in our jobs: something that can cause us not to know what to do with ourselves (or even who we are) when a career ends. But ask yourself: where are my passions?
Maybe you used to love painting. Maybe there’s a hot-button issue you really care about. Retirement is a perfect time to dedicate energy into those passions: whether you’re taking lessons, picking up a paintbrush, or volunteering with a charitable organization.
Go after what you love, no matter what that may be! Doing something that matters to you will never cease to be fulfilling. Whether you treat it like a hobby or seek out a job in the field you’ve always wanted, strive to go after those passions.
How Can I Give Back?
Especially during the holiday season, we think about generosity. Giving back, though, can be about so much more than just writing a check. Giving back can mean mentoring another investor or sharing your wisdom in other ways. It can mean volunteering, setting up a charitable fund, or even an organization. It ties back into your passions. What do you really care about? More than just during the holidays, your generosity can last all year and bring you a lot of joy in return.
Am I Prepared for the Next Generation?
Part of the fun in retirement is having the time to spend with your family that you may not have had before. No matter how big or small your family is, you, with your financial freedom, can put energy towards preparing the next generation. That covers a lot of things. Teaching good economic sense? Absolutely. Preparing your will? Yes. Maybe it feels a little morbid right now, but consider the legacy you’re going to leave behind. And start now.
You have the time now. Spend it with the people who matter to you.
That’s not limited to your family, either. You can start a blog, write a book, or mentor a younger investor. You can create a scholarship fund.
What If I Kept Working?
For most people, “retirement” means not working. Being done. Kicking back. And sure, it can be that, but it doesn’t have to be. Some people genuinely can’t stand doing “nothing,” and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with seeking out a second career or reducing your workload rather than quitting altogether. Maybe you’ve always wanted to start a business. Why not? You can have a second act! Even if you don’t make a lot doing it, the passive income from your investments can make up the difference.
If you want to work, work. Take on something you enjoy doing. Retirement isn’t a box to confine you: don’t let it narrow your definition of freedom and stop you from seeking out fulfillment.
It’s Your Life and Your Legacy
Retirement and financial freedom don’t look the same for everyone. You have freedom: use it. Explore what you want and spend you sunset years doing what makes you happy. Whether it’s exploring investments full time, pursuing a passion, or simply focusing on your family, the sky really is the limit. And it starts with discovering what you really want.
Don’t let the fantasy of retirement hold you back from fulfillment in your sunset years.