What did you do during the pandemic?

Every baby boomer reached different levels of achievement during the pandemic. Some high, some low. Washington DC journalist Harriet Edleson belongs on the high side, because she not only wrote a book, but learned a lot about the next stage of her own life: retirement.

Everybody’s talking about what they’ve done or haven’t done during the pandemic.

When I ask myself what I’ve accomplished the answer is simple enough: I finished writing a book, and saw it through production.

So, if you’re wondering why I’m writing about it here, that answer is simple, too: It’s called 12 Ways to Retire on Less:

Planning an Affordable Future.

I never actually planned to write a book during the pandemic, but as the old Yiddish saying goes, Man plans, and G-d laughs.

I’d planned to write it at least a year before. Then, I got a job offer that I couldn’t refuse. As a baby boomer, I figured I’d work fulltime at least one more year when I applied for the staff writer/editor/producer position.

When the pandemic hit, fortunately, I had already been tapping away on my laptop. I was writing articles as well.

When I think back on the year and then some, what comes to mind are two things:

  • How great it is to have learned enough that you can feel comfortable writing a book you believe will help others navigate the same challenges you’ve met.
  • How you never stop learning, especially while you’re proofing the sixth typeset version of your book manuscript.

To the first point: I encourage baby boomers to think carefully about when to claim their Social Security retirement benefits. At 62? At 66? At 70? Yes, you can wait until 70, yet only about 5% of Americans do.

Harriet Edleson

So much depends on your current financial position. Yet, remember, if you don’t have a pension, Social Security retirement benefits can be that pension, a guaranteed income. Yes, baby boomers are likely to receive all of the Social Security Retirement benefits they’ve been promised.

To the second point: If you want to stay vibrant, keep learning. One way is to keep working as long as you can, which I discuss in the book. Other ways are travel, volunteer work, serving on a nonprofit board, taking classes, earning another degree, becoming involved in your place of worship, or writing a book.

When someone asks you what you did during the pandemic, what will you say? Hopefully, you learned and grew.

Follow Harriet’s writing and activities — https://howtoretireonless.com/

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