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Are Boomer's In Denial?

For all my working years I have been a voracious reader of books, articles etc. on financial topics. One reason I do this is to learn new approaches that might help my clients become better informed and ultimately more financially succesful.

Lately I have been reading a lot on Boomers and the feelings they have as they approach retirement.  As I read them and follow people on twitter @gbgorr I recall the line from the movie “A Few Good Men” where Jack Nicolson says “You can’t handle the truth.”

I seriously believe despite the volumes of words being written today and the numerous surveys that Nicolson’s words describe Boomers to a T.

I found myself asking why?

My answer is that all these surveys and more are based upon facts, logic. People seldom do anything or take action based upon logic. Emotions drive us. Emotions such as Pride, Prestige, Love, Fear.

Let’s review a few of my collected reading over the last several months. I bet as you read them many of you will be detached, saying that won’t be me.

The share of insolvent consumers among people aged 55 and older has more than quadrupled in the past decade, hitting 20.6 per cent last year, the Office of the Superintendent of Bankruptcy Canada said Tuesday.  More seniors spending golden years in bankruptcy

Let me ask you a question? Did you plan on working 30 to 35 years of your life to retire only to  find you have a retirement that is disappointing? If you answered no, ask yourself this do you know where you will be? Or are you in avoidance, denial?

Boomer’s want it all

A new survey has found that the vast majority of Canadians agree that putting money aside is important for their future, but not if those savings mean that current family and personal pursuits need to be sacrificed.  
The italics are mine. Yes I want to save but not if it means I cannot have the latest techno gadget, car, Golf Driver or whatever. How much can you get for these at your retirement yard sale? Do you  want it all ?
Survey says Canadians want debt freedom in retirement  
Manulife Bank Survey finds however many Canadians struggle to reduce the amount they owe. 
In another survey the RBC Bank finds: Four-in-ten Canadians retiring with debt: RBC Poll

Are we talking out of both sides of our mouth?

Another  survey found that the majority of Canadians — 59% — said they would face financial difficulty if their paycheque was delayed by even just one week. Now this is for people who are working and earning an income. What happens when you retire and don’t have the income coming in anymore but still are carrying the debts from before? Could it be leading to this:

Canadians are staying up worrying about $$$ Is that you?

Hopefully in this article I have your fear emotion up. There is only so much time to build funds for retirement to replace your income.

Retirement will be the second longest part of your life. In 1960 Canadians life expectancy was age 71. At the end of 2008 it was 81. In 2020 ??? (Source: Worldbank World Development Indicators)

Now fortunately there are some simple and effective steps you can take to move ahead successfully.

  1. Commit to developing a comprehensive plan with a skilled advisor. This in itself might bring you peace of mind.
  2. Consolidate all your debts using perhaps an All-In-One option. The result, lower cost of borrowing, more cash flow to invest.
  3. Start paying yourself first.  Could you pay yourself first, one hour of earnings  out of every workday and spend the rest? If you save as much money in the next five years as you have in the last 5 years, will you be happy? Shouldn’t part of what you earn be yours too keep?
  4. Start today, procrastinating is your enemy
  5. Have some discipline.

Think of the sacrifices our parents made for us so that we could get an education, have a better life and more. It took discipline. Did we learn from that or appreciate it?

In life there are always choices, ones we make or ones others make because we didn’t choose. What will your choice be?

Disclosure: None