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How to Retire in Stages (and Why You Should)

Retiring in phases means more flexibility--and sanity

By | Meredith Dietz |

If you ever fantasized of leaving your job on your 67th birthday and hopping on an international cruise, well, the pandemic likely shattered that vision. With all the ways the pandemic changed how people work, many have latched onto the idea of more flexible, phased retirement plans (or even coming out of retirement altogether).

The idea of partial retirement allows workers to still have a source of income, with the added benefits of softening the psychological blow that comes with filling your days without a job. Here’s what to know about how and why you should consider transitioning out of work with a partial retirement plan.

Why partial retirement might be right for you

For many, the biggest reason to phase out of work in stages is that full retirement is simply not a financial possibility. The simplest form of partial retirement is turning your full-time job into part time hours. Unfortunately, not all companies will allow you to slash your hours, and instead insist on full-time work or none at all. Still, you could transition to part-time work in the same field at a different company, or maybe take the opportunity to try something new—especially if your financial need isn’t pressing (more on that below).

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