While watching the current American Presidential Election Campaign is a fairly depressing pastime, what is interesting is that five of the current top contestants are in their 70s and not many people are saying “They’re too old.”
So, if people in their 70s are deemed eligible for one of the toughest jobs in the world, why is it still hard to get a good job in Australia if you’re over 60?
We currently have overwhelming evidence that people are living longer and healthier lives and the average age expectancy in most first world countries has been steadily increasing for the last 100 years.
In fact, the baby boomers are the first generation in the history of the world that have left work and still have 20 plus years to live.
However, for everyone except the very rich, funding 20 – 30 years in retirement can be a big challenge, especially when interest rates are so low. An equally large challenge, which isn’t widely discussed, is how do we stay active and involved with life for these 20 – 30 years. Being bored stiff for most of them doesn’t sound particularly exciting.
A good starting point is to get an idea of what the next 30 years could look like and there are quite a few good books addressing this subject. “The 100-year life” and “The Longevity Economy” are two interesting reads.
The Longevity Economy makes the point that the ageing of populations is something that’s happening in nearly all first world economies and it’s not a passing trend. It’s the new “normal.” Governments and industry are going to have to make changes to accommodate this new reality and this is starting to happen.
I don’t believe that being part of an ageing population is a bad thing. The simple reality is that if you don’t suffer an early death, there’s a fair chance that you’ll grow older.
Have you thought about what you’re going to do with the extra years that medical science and living in a first world country has given you?
For most people, the main fears with living in their 80s or older, is running out of money and suffering poor health. Compulsory superannuation, working past 65 and good financial planning will help to give us better financial security.
Better physical and mental health is a challenge that most of us are going to face, so it’s a good idea to give these issues some serious thought. Our book “How to stay healthy, active and sharp in retirement” answers a lot of the questions. It’s available here on our web site.