Save for decades so you can watch more TV!
Here's a question I regularly ask in my Rule Your Retirement service: Do you really want to retire?
I've met plenty of ex-retirees who gave up work, but then gave up not-working because they found retirement pretty boring.
A recent article in U.S. New & World Report may explain why. It highlights the differences between how retirees and how workers spend their time. Retirees spend a little more time than the wage-slaves sleeping, eating, shopping, and doing household chores. But the real difference is that the average retiree watches almost 90 minutes more TV a day.
From the article:
How Seniors Age 65 to 74 Spend Their Day in Hours
(Results for the total population age 15 and older are in parenthesis.)
* Personal care activities (including sleep) 9.51 (9.39)
* Eating and drinking 1.46 (1.23)
* Household activities 2.27 (1.73)
* Purchasing goods and services 0.92 (0.77)
* Caring for household members 0.09 (0.53)
* Caring for nonhousehold members 0.31 (0.23)
* Work 1.23 (3.73)
* Education 0.02 (0.47)
* Civic and Religious activities 0.54 (0.33)
* Leisure and sports 7.12 (5.18)
o Watching TV 3.96 (2.55)
o Sports and exercise 0.29 (0.27)
o Socializing 0.62 (0.54)
o Reading 0.77 (0.32)
o Relaxing/thinking 0.41 (0.27)
o Leisure computer use 0.35 (0.31)
* Telephone calls, mail, and e-mail 0.25 (0.21)
* Other activities 0.29 (0.20)
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2008.
Now, if your vision of the ideal retirement involves more eating, sleeping, shopping, and TV, then this might be right up your alley. "It sure beats working," you might be saying.
But for me -- and I suspect others -- I'm not deferring current consumption in order to linger longer in bed, at the table, at the mall, or in front of the tube.
When it comes to retirement, you should have a plan for how you'll spend your time as well as your money. Otherwise, it'll get frittered away, like the cash in your wallet. And for retirees, it's their last chance to make the most of their time.
Robert Brokamp is the senior advisor for The Motley Fool's Rule Your Retirement service.