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Practicing for Retirement with Barbara Mock

Practicing for Retirement with Barbara MockWe continue to follow Barbara Mock through her retirement journey. For the next year, she is letting us live vicariously through her eyes, telling us what it's like to go through the stages of retirement.

Practicing for Retirement

For many people, traveling is one of the things they enjoy most about retirement. Barbara took some time off of work and went on a little mini practice retirement. She and her husband went on a trip to Priest Lake Idaho with some friends they have known for over 40 years and have kept in contact with. Everything sort of fell together last minute and she said it was magical and even thought to herself, is this what retirement could be like?

Having fun with friends that they have known forever and ever kind of made her realize that maintaining friendships over a long period of time is really going to be something valuable to as we retire.

Priest Lake

It was 96 degrees. You're in a mountain lake. I hope you guys look it up. Look at the photos look on Google Earth. It's crystal blue, pristine water. You can see to the bottom, even when it's quite deep, and it's really remote.

After 3 days, their friends had to go back to work so Barbara and her husband dusted of their camping equipment went camping at Farragut State Park in Lake Pend Oreille. They hadn't camped in the dirt for 20-25 years. They put up their tent, watched the stars, and had a romantic time. We talked about the next day where Barbara and her husband met a couple and shared a boat ride and a meal with them. What both of them learned is that you can make friends anywhere if you're open to it.

Your Spouse and Retirement

Not only has she been practicing for retirement, but Barbara has also been doing a lot of reading and research. She wants to plan for the emotional outlook of retirement, but how it will impact her relationship.  Her husband is not as willing to research but will discuss it. During a 7-hour car ride on Barbara's practice retirement/ vacation, she learned a lot. She learned that her husband has sort of been putting his retirement on hold waiting for her to retire and that he loves golf. Her husband had taken up a sport that Barbara loved and she wanted to make sure that she was taking an interest in things he loves as well.

They have also been having conversations every day. There is an enormous amount of planning and preparation it is taking her to prepare. She had no idea how many checklists and things you need to get in order prior to retirement. Social Security, financial planning, estate planning, medical insurance, social life, traveling, downsizing, or moving, among many other decisions that have to be made.

Focusing on work

Barbara does find it a little difficult to focus on work with her impending retirement. Especially after her practice retirement vacation. However, with work being very busy right now, it helps her stay focused on her job.

Pretty much everyone at work knows by now that Barbara is retiring. Some offer advice and most tell her she will love it. Barbara did reach out to an old colleague who has been retired for about 10 years. What she told Barbara was amazing. It was so inspiring. She's in her 70s, her husband's in his 80s. And she said, keep moving, move, don't become fragile. She and her husband have stand up paddleboards, they go kayaking, and they are avid snow skiers, they ski all over the world and in the US. She has a bike that she rides; she has an organic garden, and she does yoga and works out every morning! So that was her advice. Stay strong, exercise, and keep working out so that you can do the things in your retirement that you want to do.

Have you thought about practicing for retirement? Or if you have already retired, how did you prepare? Were there things that were surprising to you? Let us know in the comments below.

Read all of Barbra's blog posts by visiting https://www.rockyourretirement.com/blog/

Episodes and websites Mentioned

What a retiring Executive Needs besides Money

Your Retirement Quest by Alan Spector and Keith Lawrence

Afford Anything Podcast

Fritz Gilbert- Creating a Retirement Jar


This post on Retirement and Retirement Lifestyle first appeared on http://RockYourRetirement.com

Not Exactly Goodbye…

The future of the Rock Your Retirement showUpdate 8/3/2020:  We are changing the format of the show.  Stay tuned.  We will still be releasing at least monthly but you are going to LOVE what's coming!! (Also if you added a comment here earlier, we had a computer blip that affected this post.  It wasn't you, it was us.  Sorry about that).

 

 

The episode below replaces what I originally wrote.  Please listen to it.  It explains our new format that we created after I wrote the info below.

Prior to recording this, I wrote the post below:

*********************************************

I wanted to let you know what the future is for the Rock Your Retirement Show.

If you have listened to the episode where I discussed my traumatic event, you’ll remember that I’m re-evaluating my life. This event was life-changing for me. If you haven’t listened to the episode, and you are interested, just go to Episode 209.

Since this traumatic event, I decided I wanted to scale back on some of my workload. I have already announced to my remaining financial planning clients that I’ll be retiring from financial planning on 12/31/2020. Although I partially retired from financial planning in 2015, I continued to work with my favorite clients.

With Covid-19 affecting so many of our lives, I’ve had additional time to reflect. In my time of reflection, I have discovered that I need to make some further changes. And those changes affect the show.

Since 2016 I have been paying to host the show. Although I’ve added some advertising it has never supported the show. In fact, my affiliate link provider has indicated to me that I’m not getting enough click-throughs, so they want to start charging me as well! So, if I continue to run ads it will actually cost me money!!

It has been a tough choice however, I have decided that after we run all the shows we’ve already recorded, I’m going to take a break and we will stop doing our weekly episodes. It costs me about $150 per month to keep the show going, and my revenues are nowhere near that amount.

The only way I can continue on a regular basis is to get some listener support. You can support the show at a $3 per month basis if you’d like. If a small percentage of my listeners did this, then I will get the $150 I need to continue weekly episodes beyond 07/06/2020 when our last weekly interview is scheduled to be released.

Don’t worry though, even if I don’t get the support I need to continue on a regular basis, I’ll still pop in sporadically to tell you how I am doing. So, stay subscribed so you get the notifications.

In case you’re interested in supporting the show, here’s where you can do it: http://RockYourRetirement.com/Support

Your friendship over the last few years, and support of the show and me personally, means the world to me.

This post of Retirement and Retirement Lifestyle first appeared on http://RockYourRetirement.com

 

The Colored Pencil Art Class Experiment

colored pencil art classI did a little 6-week colored pencil art class experiment

If you are in the Rock Your Retirement Facebook group, you probably already know what it is.

Basically, I have been working with colored pencils. In other words, I've been trying to bring my artistic tendencies back.

I created three colored pencil drawings of three different Kingfisher birds. And to do that, I basically took two on-line classes. The two classes were completely different.

The first one was a video where you got to watch the instructor create the drawing. She told you what pencils she used, and you got to draw along with her. This was over five hours of video.

The second class wasn’t like that at all. The instructor was a retired high school art teacher. He also gave you the pencils that he used, but really what he did was an outline. There were videos, but they only totaled about an hour, and they were edited.

For my third bird, I didn’t take a class. I found a picture of a local Kingfisher bird and used the knowledge I had gained from the first two drawings to create the third one all on my own. It came out a lot better than I thought it would because I felt kind of lost while I was doing it. But it came out good.

So, I thought to myself, there must be people who are looking for something to do during this COVID stay at home order. A lot of us feel lost and lonely. We aren’t used to staying at home and not talking with other people outside our home. Plus, I figured that so many people are putting together puzzles and other things, that colored pencils might be the next thing. After all, the adult coloring book thing is still a thing and people might want to learn what else they can do with their pencils.

So, I decided to create a class. If you are one of my clients, you already know that I have several Medicare Class videos out there. But this wasn’t about Medicare.

It was about something that I had barely learned. So, I was very nervous about it. I reached out to the Art Club where I live and asked if they would like me to create a free online class using Zoom. I sent them the pictures of the three Kingfishers I had created, and the art club agreed.

Why did I make it a free colored pencil art class? Most of the art club classes cost anywhere from $60 to $150 here. There were several reasons.

The first reason is that honestly, I had no idea what I was doing. I didn’t know how to put an art class together and I didn’t know how I was going to show the students what to do using Zoom. But I just kind of figured it out as I went along. I didn’t have a class outline. I knew what I was going to do for the first two classes, but after that, I wasn’t really sure. But now that the art club agreed, we picked a date for the class to start on the following Wednesday. I wanted it to be an hour-long, for six weeks, so that’s what we did.

The second reason I didn’t want to charge for the class is that I’m no expert when it comes to colored pencil paintings. I call them paintings instead of drawings because that is what they wind up looking like when everything is done.

And the third reason I didn’t want to charge is that I knew more people would sign up for a free class. That way I’d get the social interaction I was looking for.

Plus, I wasn’t looking to make money from this class. I wanted to find other people to fall in love with colored pencils.

Because if you are already an artist, you’ll find that the medium is completely different from anything else you’ve done. It takes a lot of patience. The paintings take a lot longer to create. But you can make them look very realistic if you are patient.

Maybe you went to one of those wine events where you paint a picture, and everyone is painting the same one. Color pencils are totally different from painting or drawing with a regular pencil.

A lot of people will buy colored pencils for their grandkids, and then they'll decide to pick them up and try to start using them, and they'll get really frustrated because they don't do what you want them to do. Part of that is because it's totally different.

So, my goal was to work with people who had never created a picture themselves, or maybe were coloring in adult coloring books, or maybe that were artists with a different medium. My goal wasn't to work with people who already knew how to use the medium.

There are a lot of people out there who are intimidated by art. Colored pencils are easy to use if you know how to use them. I wanted to share the limited knowledge that I had with non-artists, so they could find joy in becoming an artist.

Now that I had made the commitment, I had to start preparing. I wasn’t really sure what I was going to do, so I prepared some slides for the first class. I wanted to do a demo at the end but wasn’t sure how to do it. I didn’t want to spend any money buying a camera for this purpose and figured that there MUST be a way to do it with my cell phone. So, I spent a couple of hours searching YouTube for ways that this can be done, and I found a way.

Basically, I had to sign in to Zoom twice. Once as the instructor, and once as a student. The student would be my phone and would do the demo. I was really nervous about the technology, but in my pre-class emails, I let everyone know that this was an experiment and they needed to be patient with the tech. On the first day of class, I actually had 31 people who signed up for this free class and wow, that was a lot of people! I learned a lot about teaching the class.

Number one, if I do this again, I certainly don't want that many people. In the end, I had 15 people, and that was a nice size. I learned a lot and the class learned a lot! The last day we took a screenshot of everyone who was in the final class, and all their drawings looked fantastic! These were mostly non-artists.

I purchased this contraption that holds my cell phone, I signed into the Zoom class as a student and showed everyone how to do the drawings. But it didn’t really work very well, and it was difficult. For the people who couldn’t attend the live class, and wanted to watch the Zoom recordings, it was impossible. The recordings would jump around to whoever forgot to mute themselves.

I got a brilliant idea around the third class to just record it ahead of class. So that is what I did. I recorded myself doing the drawings and talking. So, the demos were recorded and then the class sessions basically turned into a Q&A.

On the day of the class, I would send the videos for that class and then I would sit in the Zoom Room and answer questions as they came up. Then it evolved into sending the videos out ahead of time.

The reason why I am telling you this is I want you to think about something that you can do or teach in your own community. You don’t actually have to have everything set up in advance. You can make changes as you go along as I did. Even if you don't think you're an expert, you can share your knowledge. Just like I did! I am not an expert at colored pencil drawings, but I shared what I knew, and now there are about 10 people out there who want to continue with it! Sure, some people didn’t want to continue, but now they know that it’s not for them. For the people who did continue, now there are some more artists out there because I was there to help them.

I got so much out of that, I had so much fun, and I learned so much. Teaching what you know is really something that can help you rock your own retirement. You can do it for free as I did, or you can do it for money. It’s your choice! The two classes I took were not free and I gladly paid for them.

I know that there are a lot of gurus out there that are saying, you know, make money by teaching classes and, yeah, sure, you could do that, if that's what you want to do. And there's probably a ton of things that you know a little bit about where you could share your knowledge and you don’t have to be an extrovert. People think that I'm an extrovert when they meet me because I can engage in conversation with people. However, after about two hours I am drained and I really need to leave and to go home. I am the type of person that I can go to a party for two maybe three hours max. Even if it is just visiting with family, I really need to decompress afterward.

The point is that if you are an introvert, that doesn’t mean that you can’t share your knowledge with others. You don’t have to have a huge class of 31 people. You could have a class of 3 people if that is easier for you.

Teaching a class might help you rock your own retirement! You can pretty much do whatever you want, you can change it midstream. It doesn't have to be fancy, and you can learn from it too. Whether that means something that you did for work, or something you do for pleasure, or something you do or did as a side gig.

Let me give you an example. Let's say that you are someone who has been investing in real estate, and you have three or four houses, and that's how you were able to retire. Or you have 10 houses, or whatever. So, you have a lot of knowledge in this area. Well, you could do the same thing that that I'm doing.

You could put your knowledge out there and record yourself. Talking about exactly what to do and how you did it. Like how you found your first property if you remember that far back. Or what are the processes that you use when you're managing your own property, or how did you figure it out. How did you find the handyman that you're using? What do you do when somebody calls you at 2 am? You know, you could just talk all these things through.

Put them in a private YouTube video or several YouTube videos and then just ask your friends if they would go through the videos, one at a time. You can also do zoom recordings where it just records you as the speaker. You could get two or three friends together or just people who were interested in whatever it is that you're able to do, and just walk them through it in a Zoom room and record it. The zoom will record your videos to your own computer, or if you have the paid version of zoom, it will record it to the cloud. Then you can pull those videos off later.

All I am saying is that I got so much benefit from sharing my knowledge for free. It is kind of like your ongoing legacy to share what you know.

I was actually talking with a friend who is thinking of retiring and before she retires, she was going to take all of her information and workshops on what she does for a living, and she was going to hand over all of this information to another one of her competitors basically. She's not 100% ready to retire yet and I said to her, “Hey, why don't you put together a class? Why don't you take all of these power points and information you have and just turn them into a class?”

Because she works with nonprofit organizations, churches actually, and you know not everybody can afford her, not all churches can afford her prices because she is a consultant. I said, why don't you put these all these things that you know how to do in a class. Then for people who can't afford your fee, sell it to them for $197?

So think about some of the things that you can do either for free or for money and put them in a class and share your knowledge. You can build your legacy that way. Just think about it.

If you are a beginner, interested in colored pencils, I will let you into my class. Just go to http://RockYourRetirement.com/Art  to sign up. Use the coupon code JULY2020 and the class will be free. Otherwise, it will be $25.

What I would like you to do though, is to consider putting your knowledge in some sort of electronic format. So that can be passed down to others.

I wish my dad would have done that with his real estate investing knowledge. Now my dad has Parkinson's disease, he can't share all that knowledge that he had. There is a lot of knowledge out there with books and things like that. But I would have loved to have my dad’s knowledge, and I am sure that there are people out there that would love to have YOUR knowledge.

Do you have something you could share with others? Let us know in the comments below!

 

Baby Boomers Retiring in Mexico- Episode 232

Retiring in MexicoSome baby boomers are moving to and retiring in Mexico.

They are doing this not just to save money, but to have a better retirement lifestyle. I talked with Travis Scott Luther, who wrote a book called The Fun Side of the Wall: Baby Boomer Retirement in Mexico. Travis completed a thesis in 2010 about baby boomers retiring in Mexico. He received a lot of inquiries about the subject, so he decided he would write a book.

Unexpected Findings

From 2007 through 2009, we were going through that global financial crisis. It was during that time Travis has found this small group of ex-pats in Mexico. What he was most curious about is why anyone would want to leave the United States.  After all, the United States was the best country in the world with the best of everything.

His gut told him that perhaps people who might be struggling financially in the US would consider retiring in Mexico to stretch their budget. Maybe they could live more comfortably in Mexico. What he found was quite to the contrary. The person most likely to move to Mexico was actually a high-income earner. Upper middle class, if not upper class. Also highly educated. So what he found was that it wasn't people who were low income, but rather people who thought more about their money and some who wanted to even retire early.

Baby Boomers who move to Mexico retiring on average 5 years earlier than their US counterparts

What about Medical Care when you are Retiring in Mexico?

One of the reasons Les and I did not move out of the country and live abroad is because Les was concerned about medical care. Since beginning this podcast, I have talked with many people who live in the US but who go to other countries, including Mexico, to have certain medical procedures done.

Travis talks with people who are living in the US and wanting information on retiring in Mexico.  He says that medical care is a very common question and concern people have.  What he discovered is that there are a number of routes to enroll in Mexico's public health system. You can do it through work or if you're not working, you can enroll through residency. Medical enrollment is actually very easy to acquire versus other countries. He says people who are living in Mexico reported that you might have to wait a bit longer to receive care for a non-emergency standard appointment. However, the standard of care you will receive is comparable to the United States.

The Language Barrier

Travis found that the baby boomers who moved down there had really dived into the culture and learning the language. In a lot of the communities that he visited, there is no shortage of at least one ex-pat happy to help you navigate the language barriers. There are also many English speaking Mexicans who have lived in these communities for generations. They are fluent in both English and Spanish. According to Travis, it really isn't hard to get around. No one should be fearful of the language barrier and letting it get in the way of retiring in Mexico. Plus, we all have Google translate now at the tip of our fingers.

Retirement Lifestyle in Mexico

When Travis first went down to Mexico in 2007 for his research, he discovered that the folks who moved to Mexico usually had some kind of personal relationship with a friend or family member who already lived there. So people were much more likely to move if they have some social ties that already existed. In his more recent research, he found that people were more likely to move to Mexico on their own without knowing a single person. Travis attributes this to Social Media and the internet and our ability to keep in touch and form relationships online now.

The people that Travis spoke with told him what initially attracted them to the move was the cost savings. However, what made them stay is that they found this authentic community in Mexico. It was this combination of Mexican culture and the Mexican appreciation and respect for elders that they didn't feel like they had in the United States. Many felt that a culture of consumerism that overtook them or overwhelmed them in the US is something that they really needed a break from.

They also discovered a rich cultural history and this feeling as if they were connected to something that was important to them.

Another thing the ex-pats told Travis was that they didn't want to have their retirement dictated to them. In the United States, retirement has become commodified. They wanted a sense of community.

Is Retiring in Mexico right for you?

I have always considered moving to Mexico or another Latin country for a limited time. Perhaps move there for 10 years when I am in my 60s so I can soak up the relaxed lifestyle that retirement in Mexico brings.

Moving and retiring in Mexico or any other country is not for everyone. Some people find it difficult to assimilate into the culture.

Do you know anyone who lives in Mexico or another country? Have you considered a move like this? Comment below, I would love to hear your thoughts!

About our guest:  Travis Scott Luther is a Denver, Colorado writer, speaker, and entrepreneur. He received his Master’s in Sociology from the University of Colorado in Denver. He is a former Adjunct Professor of Entrepreneurship at MSU Denver and former Entrepreneur in Residence to the University of Colorado Denver. 

Luther first became interested in Baby Boomers retiring in Mexico during graduate school. His Master Thesis research contributed to the content in this book. He continues to be interested in U.S. expatriates retiring all over the world and continues to monitor those who have chosen Mexico. You can reach him via his website at http://www.travisluther.com 

The Fun Side of the Wall: Baby Boomer Retirement in Mexico

This post on retirement and retirement lifestyle first appeared on http://RockYourRetirement.com

Not Exactly Goodbye….

The Rock Your Retirement ShowI wanted to let you know what the future is for the Rock Your Retirement Show.

If you have listened to the episode where I discussed my traumatic event, you’ll remember that I’m re-evaluating my life. This event was life-changing for me. If you haven’t listened to the episode, and you are interested, just go to Episode 209.

Since this traumatic event, I decided I wanted to scale back on some of my workloads. I have already announced to my remaining financial planning clients that I’ll be retiring from financial planning on 12/31/2020. Although I partially retired from financial planning in 2015, I continued to work with my favorite clients.

With Covid-19 affecting so many of our lives, I’ve had additional time to reflect. In my time of reflection, I have discovered that I need to make some further changes. And those changes affect the show.

Since 2016 I have been paying to host the show. Although I’ve added some advertising it has never supported the show. In fact, my affiliate link provider has indicated to me that I’m not getting enough click-throughs, so they want to start charging me as well! So, if I continue to run ads it will actually cost me money!!

It has been a tough choice however, I have decided that after we run all the shows we’ve already recorded, I’m going to take a break and we will stop doing our weekly episodes. It costs me about $150 per month to keep the show going, and my revenues are nowhere near that amount.

The only way I can continue on a regular basis is to get some listener support. You can support the show on a $3 per month basis if you’d like. If a small percentage of my listeners did this, then I will get the $150 I need to continue weekly episodes beyond 07/06/2020 when our last weekly interview is scheduled to be released.

Don’t worry though, even if I don’t get the support I need to continue on a regular basis, I’ll still pop in sporadically to tell you how I am doing. So, stay subscribed so you get the notifications.

In case you’re interested in supporting the show, here’s where you can do it: http://RockYourRetirement.com/Support

Your friendship over the last few years, and support of the show and me personally, means the world to me.

This post of Retirement and Retirement Lifestyle first appeared on http://RockYourRetirement.com

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