One of the major difficulties of having a government pension is the sheer quantity of money that has to be managed. Many people aspire to have a large pension, but government workers will admit that although it’s a lot of fun, it’s also a lot of work. Every government retiree can recall the excitement of receiving that first paycheck, but after you’ve bought yourself a new car, some new clothes and a few fancy restaurant meals, you can soon run out of ideas to keep you occupied. In this article, I will attempt to give government retirees a variety of helpful hints and tips to get the most out of your hard earned pension make sure that your retirement is as relaxing as possible.
The Money Curse
A common misconception about money is that it automatically improves your life. People who aspire to earn a lot of money or retire on a sweet government pension can often think of thousands of things that they’d like to buy. But as government retirees will tell you, it’s often more of a curse than a blessing. Managing large sums of money can cause a lot of stress. When you have a lot of money, you have a lot to lose, and having to choose between high-cost items can be very frustrating. Having money allows you to have a comfortable retirement, but the point is you need to know what to spend it on in order to maximize happiness.
Studies have shown that experiences provide much more long term satisfaction than material goods. Rather than buying a new car or gadget, why not buy a luxury cruise or a meal at a great restaurant? Use your freedom to try new things and visit new places. If you’re still not sure what to do, have a look at the world’s most popular vacation destinations and pick an exotic location that you’ve never visited.
Having said that, material possessions don’t hurt if you buy them in moderation. If you really want that new car and it’s something you’ve been dreaming about for years, then go ahead and spoil yourself! You’ve dedicated many years to public service, and America rewards hard work.
Now that you’ve got some great ideas for building a happy retirement, you might also want to check out the range of extra perks available to government retirees. If yo were working at the county or municipal level, you might be eligible for a tax-advantaged government retirement plan which is separate from your pension. If you have a family you may also be eligible for long term care insurance which will pay many of your family’s day to day expenses and is tied to cost of living. It’s also worth checking with your scheme to see whether you qualify for the many miscellaneous perks that come with various government jobs. Many plans come with free gym memberships, health benefits and discounts on almost all public services around the country.
Don’t Feel Guilty!
This is something that really bugs me. Some government employees and retirees feel that their pensions are disproportionately large compared to the pensions of their friends and family in the private sector. But there’s a good reason for that. By working for the government, you chose to serve your country. You could have worked at any private sector company, and you would have been free to climb the corporate ladder to much greater riches. But instead you reserved your energy, intelligence and passion for your country, and for that you should be proud.