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CBSMoneyWatch: The Most Important Retirement Planning Questions


By Steve Vernon

What are the reasons for the life you want? One way to answer this question is to think about and answer two insightful, provocative questions.

1. What would you do if you had one year to live? When I pose this question at retirement planning workshops, many people focus on the things that have the most meaning to them and let everything else just fall away.

2. What would your retirement look like if you could live forever? In this case, most people focus on renewal -- trying new things, learning new skills, making new friends. And once again, the most undesirable features of their lives fall away, when they realize they don't want to be doing those things forever.

Of course, the truth most likely lies somewhere in between: Most of us will live longer than a year, and we certainly won't live forever. But framing our life this way offers valuable insights to help us design the life we really want. I like to sum it up this way: Do more of what you like and what you're good at, and do less of what you don't like.


More From MoneyWatch:
How Long Will You Live?
Estimate Your Life Expectancy--Change Your Life
Can Boomers Afford to Leave a Legacy?

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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