We all love to gripe and groan about the state of something in North America. The government is spending too much money, our health care system is expensive and slow, we are paying more taxes and on and on. Sure some things can be improved and will be improved over the coming years, but we already have such a great system of freedoms and safety nets that we should also be thankful for what we do have. More than half of the countries in the rest of the world do not have the life expectancy, the support systems and retirement systems that you find in North America.
Our Retirement System
Here are 10 reasons why we should be happy with our retirement system and why we should always take the glass half full approach!
1. Better demographics
2. Social Security and Medicare
3. Personal savings
4. Better 401(k) plans
5. More advice, and free money
6. The ability to work longer
7. Longer lives
8. Better health care
9. There is retirement
10. It’s more than money
More Detail about our Retirement System
1. Better demographics – sure baby boomers are retiring in droves and placing a burden on the health system. But this retirement exodus makes way for young people to get jobs and continue the lifestyle we have in the US and Canada.
2. Social Security and Medicare – At least we have some medical care as compared to none. And yes it is expensive and yes it can be drastically improved. But can you imagine a system with no medical care and no support for medical issues in retirement. Some countries are faced with this issue and it is not a pretty site.
3. Personal savings – There are lots of people with insufficient savings for retirement. But many have something and many have enough. We have families that can support us and we are not losing our homes to wars and famine. Many people today have savings or pensions that they will have available in retirement.
Better Savings Plans
4. Better 401(k) & RRSP plans – 401(K)’s are used in the US and RRSP’s are used in Canada as a means of tax free savings. At least we have them and people are placing money in them for their retirement.
5. More advice, and free money – There is sometimes way too much advice out there on the net and in banks and other investment houses. But at least it is there and you have to use your own brains to make sure that you are invested well – The golden rules – Diversify, Go for quality, get Involved.
6. The ability to work longer – Now we can even work longer, past the age of 65 if we want. Some people groan at this idea, while others welcome it as something to do in their retired years and as a source of contact with people, almost a social life for some.
7. Longer lives – We have good food, we have good medical care and we have a safe environment compared to many other countries. We are living longer to enjoy our families and our lives, especially in retirement.
8. Better health care – We probably complain about health care the most, but we have it and we have excellent care when it comes to the serious stuff. We do have to solve the expense side of health care, but compared to not having health care options we are so far ahead of other countries.
9. There is retirement – We take this for granted, but if you plan properly, save your money , there is retirement and you have some of the funds you need to enjoy it. Your own savings should be high on the priority list, but you also will receive some money from the government as well. Enjoy retirement and enjoy every day!
There is more Than Money
10. It’s more than money – Enjoy the family, enjoy the weather and enjoy your friends and acquaintances. If you have ever had a serious illness, then you will understand that every day is a blessing and we should all enjoy just being alive!
Count our blessings, at least we have a retirement system!