Retirement Answer Man

When I think about the way the American Dream is typically carried out, it looks like a “Paint By Numbers” exercise. We’re given specific things we’re supposed to do in life - graduate High School, go to college, get a job, work a long time, save up for retirement, retire. But is that really the way it has to be? And does it NEED to be that way? What if you don’t want it to be that way? What can you do to make the life that you want in retirement? One thing it’s going to take to live the way you want to live and retire in the way you want to retire is courage. On this episode I’m going to walk you through some of the ways I think you can apply courage in everyday things so you can head where you want to go.

Find a way to live a life of courage. It will keep you young longer.

My friend Dan Miller says that the minute you begin settling down to live a life of ease is the minute you begin to die. That’s because you don’t have any obstacles or challenges to face. You’re going to get soft, flabby, and weak - and potentially lose your motivation for life in the end. And it doesn’t matter how much money you’ve saved up for those retirement years, you’ll fall prey to the same cycle if you’re not living a life of courage. Find out more about the path to retirement that is traveled on a road of courage, on this episode.

The Social Security Administration has changed a few things, and you may not like it.

There are some rather complicated changes going on in terms of social security policies surrounding the receipt of future benefits. There are some categories of people - about 30% of current SS recipients - who could see their benefits go down in 2017. It sounds scary and really is a concern for many people, so listen to this episode as I try to explain what’s going on. You’ll want to know about this if you depend on social security income in any way. Courage my friends - courage!

What’s the real value of having a financial advisor?

When you head toward retirement it’s like you’re going on a long backpacking trip. You’re going to be leaving many comfortable things you’ve become accustomed to - such as your career, your regular (larger) income, medical benefits, and more. It’s going to take courage for you to face those changes and it's helpful if you have someone in your corner who understands the road ahead and can give you advice and encouragement about what you’re going to go through. An advisor is a guide, a person who can lead you through the path so you avoid the dangers and make the most of your retirement journey.

Should I take my pension or a lump sum amount?

This is a question I get often. Many companies do this sort of thing and there isn’t a paint-by-numbers approach that fits every person. If you ever face this scenario there are a lot of things you need to consider - the amounts you’ll receive from each option, what your personal history is with being a disciplined spender, your expectations about the rate of return you could get on the money if you take it in a lump sum, your age and your spouse’s age, and more. It’s yet another place on the path to retirement where you’re going to need to face things that are uncertain and bolster up your courage to make a good choice. I expect many of you will be helped by the options I lay out for this listener, so be sure you listen.


  • [0:27] My Paint-by-Number story, and how it applies to this episode about courage.


  • [3:22] What is “courage” anyway?


  • [5:56] Your reminder to get 6 shot Saturday.
  • [7:42] Why you may experience a decrease in your Social Security benefits.


  • [9:40] Listener question from Howard: What is the value of an advisor?
  • [16:23] Question from Jack: Should I take my pension or a lump sum amount?
  • [25:32] Bob’s question: Can my wife do profit sharing, etc. as a freelancer?
  • [28:33] Another Bob asks another question: Should I add bonds to specific accounts within my portfolio?



Get 6 shot Saturday by texting “Planning to “33444”

Street article about SS amounts changing.

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Direct download: RAM140.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am CDT