Will I Ever Get Off This Treadmill?

Posted on October 10, 2012 at 5:01 pm

(New York Times) You’re 65 years old, and it’s hard to imagine you ever hoped that by now you’d be playing canasta year-round in Fort Lauderdale or hitting the links twice a week in Tucson. You’re a boomer, man. Still, you may have daydreamed about spending your days following Hot Tuna on tour, or doing monthlong meditation retreats, or even joining the Peace Corps.

But you’re not wadding foam into your ears to block out that bass or om-ing in Taos. You are at your office. And you may be there for a while. Because baby boomers are likely to retire later than the people who came before them.

The glass-half-empty crowd out there may see the task before them as Sisyphean. Those more inclined toward optimism may see it as merely Herculean: “There sure is a lot of . . . stuff in these stables to shovel. But if I keep at it long enough and show a little ingenuity, I have to get out of here sooner or later.” And, of course, many people are happy they will get to keep doing something they enjoy.

But however their feelings about it differ, most people realize that the rules of retirement have changed. In April, a Gallup survey of nonretired adults found that the average American expects to retire at age 67 — four years later than those polled a decade earlier and seven years later than those polled in the mid-1990s. Research tends to back them up. The Center for Retirement Research at Boston College reports that the average retirement age for men has climbed to 64 from 62 over the past 20 years. The age for women has also climbed and is now 62. Another study looked at the first boomers to hit retirement age and found that 40 percent of the men were still working at age 65, compared with 20 percent of those 10 years earlier. And the trend is predicted to continue. CONTINUE READING

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