Daunted by the prospect of retiring?  Rethink how you navigate this significant shift:  a phased-in transition may be the answer.

Half in, Half out

Perhaps a better way for you
retire ...

My message in my book Retiremeant is that this time of your life is one where you get to make your unfulfilled dreams and goals a reality on your own terms and in your own time.  A big plus of having my book on shelves around the country is that new people from all over South Africa are sharing their stories with me. As a result of this, a significant theme has emerged in their accounts, and I think it is one worth sharing: there are many dynamics surrounding exiting work and numerous ways to do so.

At Chartered, we encourage clients to consider a phased-in retirement when it comes to leaving work: half in and half out. Today, leaving work doesn't have to be an either-or.  You can, instead, negotiate to retire at a more gradual rate, thereby winding down rather than exiting completely. 

It is important to know that, if you are working in a job and not enjoying it, go ahead and find a way to replace this with work that will give you more enjoyment ... but do it in a way that is not all-consuming.

Frazzled, not free!
A potential client called me in a very burnt-out state.  "I just want to do nothing for a few years," he said.  "The work I once loved so much has squeezed all the enjoyment out of my existence,and I feel my life is frantic." He felt his only option was to retire. 

Following many hours of discussion, he decided to hire someone to share his workload, thereby freeing up his time. He needed to discover that others could bring their own skills - he is not the only person who must do everything. The plus is that he can give away tasks that make his job onerous.

I am happy to share that he had the right attitude.  Having implemented his plan, he now works fewer hours, loves his work again, and finds time to go away with his family. Another exciting development is that he revived his love of playing the violin, a talent dormant since his early twenties.

So, keep considering ...
While money you earn in a phased-in retirement may be less, the value in drawing from your investment later is substantial.  Work provides much stimulation and helps stave off cognitive decline.  It is important to take into account how much we all love to add value to others; work, whether we are paid for it or not, is a meaningful way to add value to others.

John Campbell and I recently travelled around the country, catching up with clients.  Meeting everyone was so wonderful that we are keenly looking forward to the next trip, and we have so many stories of meaningful retirements to share as a result.

Chartered client, John Arnesen, writes of living out this philosophy of a phased-in retiremeant, a way to continue to add value on your own terms.

The article by Retirementor, Alan Hosking, reminds us that it is a worthwhile exercise to do a self-audit, identifying your gifts, talents and skills.  This is really helpful when clarifying what your really want to do in retirement.

I hope you will enjoy the read! 

Nambia: a never-to-
be-forgetten trip

On their visit to Port Elizabeth, John and Kim shared the excitement of Allan and Gail Stephen, Chartered clients who recently undertook to tick one of their Bucket Wheel items off their calendar: a monumental trip to Namibia
- self-driven, across vast sandy areas, sleeping among majestic rocks.  Visit this diverse and beautiful country with them by clicking here to read the full story.


Know how to fulfil
your destiny?

The Retire Successfully website uniquely features articles by experts in their fields, sharing their wisdom around the Wheel of Balance with our readers - available to you by just visting the Retire Successfully website -

Retirementor, Alan Hosking, writes about Destiny, a word that gets everyone excited.  Nobody wants to think they will die having lived a meaningless life - we want to feel our life has a purpose.  Click here to see why Alan says we should plan to die empty.

A father finds purpose in loss

Chartered client, Bruce Watt, has faced his greatest nightmare: losing a child.  He shared with John and Kim, on their visit to KZN, how he has created a way to support others in their grief, as he himself has suffered such tragedy.  "It would have helped so much if someone had said that they had travelled this journey, and had taken my hand to walk the road," he says.  Now, Bruce has written a book to offer that hand to others, whatever their journey. His hope is that the insights into the grieving process will show a different way to cope with the unspeakable.  His book is available at

Worklife Redesigned

Chartered client, John Arnesen, faced a cross-roads when a health scare forced him to assess what his worklife would look like going forward.

On March 1 2016, I officially started life as a 'retired pensioner'. While I no longer work for a boss and can draw a pension, these two facts don't mean I now sit at home getting lazy ...

On the contrary, 'retiring' has given me a new lease of life and I am working 'harder' than ever before!  Harder in this case certainly does not mean I am struggling but rather  how much energy I am putting into what I do every day.

The decision to retire was fast-tracked when I had a blackout at a restaurant in Durban last year.  I spent two days in hospital and underwent every test under the sun - nothing was found and the specialist said it was all stress .... So, I checked in with Pat Blamire, my planner at Chartered, and, based on her wise counsel and after chatting with my wife, Meryl, I decided to 'retire' on my sixtieth birthday. 

Retirement is such a misunderstood word
So, as a retired pensioner, I get up at 5:45 Monday to Friday and, after the morning routine, I 'leave for work' at around 6:45. Where I go varies from day to day.  Some days I go to one of my client's offices, on other days I meet someone at a coffee shop and, from time to time, I get started at my home office.

Getting to this point was a journey in itself.  For some time, I have toyed with the idea of my own consulting business.  However, I never was brave enough to take the plunge.  The change came after my session with Pat where she showed me that I could retire and live comfortably on my pension.  This information, together with the health scare, was the push I needed. So, with the confidence of a pension safety net, I stared Arnesen & Associates, offering three things:  marketing and education insight, innovation and experience. 

It would be a lie if I said I never looked back.  There have been times when I wondered (and panicked!): Is 'early' retirement wise? Will I make enough money?  Will I find clients?  and numerous other questions.  However, as time goes by, the doubt is declining to just a whisper every now and then ...

I am glad to say that so far the journey has been great.  I now have big plans and dream of Arnesen & Associates becoming a sought-after boutique consultancy.

The new routine is wonderful as it has provided me with both a sense of purpose and freedom.  I still am looking for a bit more balance so that I can fit in more 'me time', but I suppose I now have the choice every day, and so, in truth, every day is now 'me time' ...                  

John Arnesen and his family at his daughter's wedding earlier this year.

Ultimate on-line treasure hunt

Lindajane and Trevor Thompson can usually be found on the beautiful Belvidere Estate in Knysna. 

But, seldom sedentary, they have discovered an exciting hobby that keeps them with something to search for ... Geocaching.  "We love the outdoors and travel a lot.  Geocaching has become one of our favourite ways of spending time.  It satisfies our need for seeking out new places and experiences," explains Trevor.  If you want to find out what makes this such an amazing activity, click here to hear more from Trevor and Lindajane.
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