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Retire From Work, But Not From Life

Article by Christine Clark

Photography by Melissa Hatcher

Originally published in Celina Lifestyle

Planning for retirement can seem overwhelming. Where do you start? Financial planning seems like a logical place. But what about your health, activities you enjoy, goals you have yet to accomplish? Retirement seems a long way off in your 20s, 30s, and 40s, but now in your 50s, you realize you are getting older, and you are probably unprepared in one category or another.   

A post-COVID trend is seeing people's interest in retiring earlier. The average age of retirement is 61 according to a 2022 Gallup Survey. With, only 10% of Americans waiting until they are 70 to retire.  

Tammie Walker a Private Wealth Advisor with Strategic Wealth Advisor Team (, a private wealth advisory practice of Ameriprise Financial Services, LLC, reminds us, “Turning 65 does not mean you are financially ready to retire, it just means you are having a birthday.”

Tammie recommends clients consider “You are retiring from something, but you are also retiring to something.” Depending on your personality and interests outside of your work, retirement can be something you look forward to or dread. Over the years she has seen many clients return to work after a few months because they were bored and missing the excitement of achievement. Planning is the key to retiring well. Financial planning is the obvious place to start, but lifestyle planning is also important to understand. Developing Interests and hobbies before retirement and outside of work will help you step off well into retirement.

The first step in Tammie’s recommendations is to sit with a financial advisor who looks at your savings and investment portfolio. This can include any 401K investments, pension plans, IRA savings, and market investments, to determine if you are well positioned for retirement. Most people will want to move to investments that have a low-risk profile, are income-producing, and tax-friendly heading into retirement. The biggest mistake she sees people make is not planning for medical expenses, especially if they are retiring before 65 and eligible for Medicare. 

Other factors to build into a well-balanced retirement plan, factor in the rate of inflation, individual tax situations, and a social security analysis to determine your best age to draw benefits.

For the next step, Insurance Agent Eddie Buckley with State Farm (972.382.9008) in Celina, suggests looking at the milestone your family has yet to cross. This can include college expenses for your kids, weddings, paying off mortgages and cars, and reducing your overall debts. These events factor into the type of Life Insurance you will need heading into retirement. It can be hard to talk about, but also determine how your family will pay for your end-of-life expenses. Eddie tells his clients, “Taking care of your family after you are gone, is the most selfless purchase you will ever make.” As with other retirement investments, the younger you can put your Life Insurance plan together, the better the benefit to your family's future. 

Dr. David Jarquin, owner of Independence Chiropractic ( in Celina, recommends in addition to a financial plan that potential retirees consider hobbies and interests to pursue in retirement. Those interests should keep you moving and stimulated mentally. Many people who retire slow down and over time lose their flexibility and mobility. They begin to put on weight and struggle to do the things they envisioned doing.

Dr. David shared a story of his grandmother who at 83 plays three hours of tennis every day. This not only keeps her physically active, but also keeps her mentally engaged with friends and the community. 

Diet and nutrition are such an important part of retiring well. Dr. David says, “You might be taking a break from work, but your health never takes a day off.” He recommends a routine of chiropractic care as a regular part of your retirement plan. Your practitioner can look at the impact of arthritis and joint degeneration and create a routine that keeps you active and healthy. 

All three of our professionals view the Celina and North Texas area as a positive place to retire. With close and easy access to health care, entertainment, and activities, a retiring person can find plenty to keep them active. 

Celina has opened the new Ralph O’Dell Senior Citizens Center (410 E. Main St). This exciting center is now located in a remodeled building next to the old Bobcat Field on Pecan Ave. The fresh new center allows seniors of the community to gather to play games, attend classes, and share meals. On a recent visit to the center, we found several ladies who had brought their lunch and were enjoying a game of cards while catching up on all the local news. The center offers several exercise and fitness classes each day such as seated and standing strength classes, Drumba, and chair volleyball. The center also encourages citizens to gather and socialize through common interests such as music, woodworking, community service, and crafting. On Mondays and Wednesdays each week, local businesses donate and serve lunch for regular center attendees.

Planning for retirement is more than dreaming about not working, it is about creating plans that address your desired financial lifestyle, long-term health, and the quality of life you value.

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