The moment we discuss retirement, the first question occurring in our minds is whether our financial corpus will outlive our lives or not? Volumes after volumes have been written and dedicated to the financial life post-retirement and how one can secure one’s financial needs for old age. While there is no denying that the financial aspect is extremely important and should not be overlooked, the question that comes to the fore is whether the financials should be the only aspect we should focus upon as we approach retirement?
Kiran Telang, in her book ‘Mindful Retirement’, has uncovered many other aspects which we generally forget to address. We are so obsessed with money and health (read in this order only) that we do not feel the need to look at retirement beyond the realm of money. Yes, we have a life beyond retirement, and we need to keep ourselves gainfully occupied. Moreover, we need to keep ourselves healthy, and we ought to converse with our family on various ‘what if’ situations arising out of health-related issues. We need to think about palliative care and senior citizen living spaces. We also need to reassess our relationships in the changing scenario. Likewise, we also need to assess and work on emotional vulnerabilities and look at ways of gaining a sense of fulfilment through deep introspection.
These are some of the various aspects we need to approach before entering the retirement phase, thereby ensuring that the transition happens smoothly. The author has interestingly created different kaleidoscopes covering relevant aspects and addressing underlying issues. She has also provided solutions and/or suggestions wherever possible.
While we may think it is the book to be read by readers above the age of 50, my suggestion will be that anyone beyond the age of 35 should read this book and keep on referring every couple of years. This will ensure that the holistic preparation starts in a time-bound manner and retirement becomes a phase to be enjoyed to the fullest.
The use of simple language makes the book appealing to the masses. Also, the section-wise allocation of different aspects gives the liberty to the readers to pick the book and start from wherever he or she feels comfortable. The variety of anecdotes used and the references provided gives an impression that the author has done complete homework, especially for the book, rather than just sharing her experience.
Overall, it is an excellent book for readers who wish to approach their retirement with complete preparedness and ensure nothing comes as a surprise later.