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Work Graduation!

Congratulations! You’ve graduated from work! You’ve probably gone through numerous graduations by now, but none as important as this one. The most common question after graduation is, what’s next? This specific graduation is on to the next phase of life, retirement. You’ve worked so hard for the last 40+ years, so it’s time to celebrate. Over your working years, you’ve paid off all your debt, saved, and invested to set up your enjoyment years. Now, bring on the travel and exploration!


Throughout your working journey, you’ve invested well and have created a nest egg to be proud of. If you haven’t, keep in mind that there is always time to make changes to impact your future. Meeting with someone who can guide you with the heart of a teacher is not only a life lesson but a blessing. No matter what phase you’re in, consider meeting with one of our advisors at Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers to walk with you on this path.


As we hang up our keyboards, stethoscopes, pens, pencils, or whatever is metaphorically correct for your career, remember that the planning should never stop. Tactically, we have daily/weekly tasks that need to align with our end goals, but strategically, we need to plan out the next set of years to accomplish those long-term goals. Financial planning is a big part of this story, but understanding what happens after we retire may determine HOW we execute our plan. You’ve probably heard some advisors or podcasts talk about the phases of retirement. In today’s discussion, we’ll explore these and dive deeper into understanding the Go-Go, Slow-Go, and No-Go phases of retirement.


Go-Go Years

The Go-Go years are not the years where you blast ’60s music while wearing some tie-dye combo with some flowers in your hair (though it may be for some folks). This is the time right after your last day at work and, depending on your health, may go on for a while. This is the initial retirement phase, where retirees have most of their energy and are ready for adventures. Thus, the Go-Go years. Ready to explore the world, meet up with friends at a whim, learn a new skill, and spend time with family.  The go-go years are some of the most precious years of retirement but also the most expensive.


As you can imagine, this energy and desire to explore the world comes at a financial cost. However, this is precisely what you’ve saved for! Enjoy it, and make sure your finances align with your goals.


Slow-Go Years

The next phase of retirement is the slow-go years.  After exploring the world and enjoying all it can offer, we may only do one big trip a year instead of 2 or 3 at this next phase of retirement. Or you may choose to do a trip every other year. This is the phase where our body and mind catch up with us. Physically, we may have some limitations, but mentally, we may find more.


Here, we start slowing down and focusing more on the important parts of our lives, like spending more time with family, spiritual fulfillment, giving, sharing, and mentoring.  The slow-go years may not have all the glitz and glamor of the go-go years, but you find significantly more fulfillment in these years. Though adventures have declined considerably, your finances are in good shape, and personal spending slows down.  However, we may find ourselves being more philanthropic or giving more during these years.


No-Go Years

After we’ve hung up our ‘60s outfits and have already explored the world to our heart's desire, during this next phase of retirement, it is common to see retirees slow down even further than in previous phases. In this final retirement phase, physical capabilities and health are the most significant limiting factors. During this phase, healthcare needs and costs grow and can be the greatest expense retirees face. As healthcare expenses rise, one of the greatest risks for retirees during this phase is running out of money. 


Enjoy this time, and continue to take care of your health. Most importantly, share your story and journey with your loved ones. There is so much to learn from each other, and any wisdom you pass on will be a part of your legacy.



The phases of retirement are pretty broad and are meant to be. They may not directly align with your story, but that shouldn’t matter. If you’re ready to retire, go and enjoy it! If you’re planning for retirement, make sure you align your goals with your finances.


Financial planning for retirement can be tricky, but understanding your needs during the different phases of retirement cannot be overlooked. For example, you may spend more of your nest egg in the go-go years on travel, but in the no-go years, much of your expenses may be related to healthcare. There are many strategies and considerations to put on the table when planning for retirement, including (but not limited to) retirement investing, long-term care insurance, will/trust formation, power of attorney (financial and health), annuity investments, or other fixed income, Roth conversions, and many more. Based on your unique situation, our financial advisors can guide you through creating a plan that aligns with your goals.

The Phases of Retirement

April 22, 2024

Summit Puri

Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers is an SEC-registered investment adviser firm.  The information presented is for educational purposes only and intended for a broad audience.  The information does not intend to make an offer or solicitation to sell or purchase any specific securities, investments, or investment strategies. Investments involve risk and are not guaranteed.  Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers reasonably believes that this marketing does not include any false or misleading statements or omissions of facts regarding services, investment, or client experience. Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers has a reasonable belief that the content will not cause an untrue or misleading implication regarding the adviser’s services, investments, or client experiences. Please refer to the firm’s ADV Part 2A for material risks disclosures.

Past performance of specific investment advice should not be relied upon without knowledge of certain circumstances of market events, the nature and timing of the investments, and relevant constraints of the investment. Whitaker-Myers Wealth Managers has presented information in a fair and balanced manner. 

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