Prioritizing Your Retirement

As long as you make an effort to put retirement at the top of your list of priorities, you’ll be able to retire. However, this is going to require you to re-evaluate the way you live your life.

There are hundreds of thousands of Europeans who have retired on one hundred dollars a month, or less. In fact, there are few, if any, European nations where the average workingman can look forward to a pension that large upon his retirement at 60 or 65 years of age. One hundred dollars a month is a fortune in the eyes of the average European. Actually, in most European countries the working man does not make that magnificent sum even while employed a full working week. Indeed, there are some European nations, Spain, for example, where even a skilled electrician or plumber, does not make as much as fifty dollars a month, working full time.

However, it would occur to comparatively few American couples who had a guaranteed income of a hundred a month, to retire. Why should this be?

Largely because we Americans have established a set of standards which makes a hundred dollars a month hardly more than pin money. There are some who say that this set of standards is a ridiculous one, but ridiculous or not it is there.

If you feel you absolutely must have a new automobile every year or two, then obviously you are not going to be able to retire on a hundred a month – in fact, it’ll probably cost you that much to run your car, if you include depreciation and adequate insurance.

If prime quality steak is the only meat that you find digestible, I also doubt that you’ll be able to retire on anything like this sum. If your clothes must be the latest styles from Paris, you’re sunk and will probably have to keep on that treadmill for a good many more years. If the only beverages you find potable are imported scotch or cognac, once again it’s no go – unless you wish to give up drinking.

It’s a matter of sitting down and thinking it out. What is it that you really want in life? What is really important to you?

If you must have the ultra-ultra gadgets that our civilization has dreamed up, then you will need a considerable income before you can retire, free of any work, because they are very expensive. In later chapters of this book I am going to illustrate ways in which you can make good money with a minimum of effort, but if you wish to retire completely free of any effort at all and still demand a king-size house, a new car, the most expensive of frozen and canned foods as well as the latest styles in clothing, you’re going to have to have a whopper of an income.

However, I repeat, what is really important to you?

There is no doubt whatsoever that if you have a sufficient initial amount of money to buy a car (it need not be new) and a trailer (it need be neither new nor large) and an income of approximately one hundred dollars a month, you can retire and see America, Canada and Mexico. Leisurely, thoroughly, happily. There is just no doubt at all. Tens of thousands of other Americans are doing it. You can do it too. You just need to make a list of priorities and if retirement is at the top of that list, you need to realize you may have to forgo some other luxuries.

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