Retirement Answer Man

Recently, we had the finale of the Retirement Plan Live series, so I want to share my observations on what we can all learn from Rosie’s experience. There was a lot to unpack from Rosie’s plan. Before we get to the Listener Questions segment, I’ll share my thoughts with you. 

Make sure to stick around after the listener questions to hear the Bring It On segment with Dr. Bobby Dubois. You’ll hear about building energy in retirement through your emotional, cognitive, and social well-being. Learn how to use these powerful ways to live longer and stay healthier in retirement.

My observations on the latest Retirement Plan LIve with Rosie

Rosie recently shared her retirement plan with all of us in our Retirement Plan Live series. This is a very public way to plan for retirement, so she was brave to put herself out there to share her situation openly. Unfortunately, Rosie’s current trajectory is not feasible and she and her husband are on track to run out of money within ten years. 

Coming to this understanding while live in front of 1000+ people is incredibly difficult, but now she can correct course to get back on track. This wasn’t only a learning experience for Rosie, it was for me as well. Here are a few of my takeaways from this experience. 

A plan must be feasible and resilient

Rosie retired in mid-2021 in the middle of a bull market when interest rates were zero. She was working with a financial planner, so there were projections that showed her plan was feasible. However, there was nothing done to make that plan resilient in the face of challenging circumstances. 

Her withdrawal rate did not match up with the assets they have and nothing was done to compensate when the sequence of return risk reared its ugly head. Without resiliency designed into the plan, it fell apart quickly. They are now in a position where they have to make some tough decisions.

A feasible plan is like a lit candle. It can burn; however, a gentle breeze will blow it out. Having a resilient plan is like having a fire. When a wind comes by it won’t go out–it may even gain more strength with the added fuel.

An accumulation investment strategy doesn’t work in retirement

Going into retirement Rosie and Dwayne were invested in 75% equities. Since they were already constrained as they approached retirement, they needed to be a bit more conservative. Their monthly systematic withdrawals came directly from selling those equities and they had no decumulation strategy. The result is that they are now underfunded.

There is a difference between a financial advisor and a retirement planner

Even though Rosie and Dwayne were using a certified financial planner, they still got blown off course. A financial advisor is similar to a general practitioner in medicine. They are not retirement specialists, so they may not understand how to build resiliency into a retirement plan. A retirement planner goes deeper on how to create a decumulation plan that has resiliency built in. They also understand that selling equities to meet withdrawals doesn’t work in a constrained retirement situation. 

Communication is crucial

It was clear that there were communication issues between Rosie and her advisor. She assumed there was safe money set aside somewhere while there wasn’t. This incongruence between what she thought and what her advisor understood has also contributed to their current situation. 

While Rosie had conversations with her advisor, they were surface-level, and she didn’t pose follow-up questions to help improve her understanding of the situation. She didn’t understand the decumulation plan to create her retirement paycheck. This vital detail was missing. One year into retirement and her retirement plan fell apart. 

They didn’t analyze the opportunities to increase their social capital 

Both Rosie and Dwayne took Social Security early so that they could try and preserve their assets as long as possible. This was always what they had planned, so they never considered anything else. Had they carefully considered a different strategy for filing for Social Security, it may have made a difference in their trajectory. 

Have you listened to the latest Retirement Plan Live series? Did you attend the results webinar? If you missed it check out the replay



  • [2:05] My observations from the Retirement Plan Live webinar


  • [11:40] Is deferred compensation considered earned income during the distribution period?
  • [14:17] When can someone collect Social Security survivor benefits?
  • [17:13] On setting aside a 5-year fund as the basis to building the pie cake
  • [25:51] On spending psychology during the go-go years


  • [30:43] On building energy in retirement through emotional, cognitive, and social well being
  • [32:15] Your sleep, social, mind-body connection, and exposure to extreme climate can greatly affect your well-being in retirement
  • [35:55] Why is sleep so important?
  • [39:10] How social interaction affects your health
  • [42:02] What do we mean by mind-body connection?
  • [43:03] How does exposure help improve energy?


  • [47:33] Choose one thing to start doing to improve your energy

Resources Mentioned In This Episode

The Retirement Plan Live replay

Rock Retirement Club

Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That

BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney

Roger’s Retirement Learning Center

Direct download: RAM473.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:00am CDT