A couple of weeks into the new year – and new decade – chances are, some of your goals for 2020 are flagging. That time when a year draws to a close and we rule an imaginary line beneath it always seems the right time to make plans. To start afresh. To try something new. To give something up.
According to finder.com, 79 per cent of Australians commit to a new year’s resolution. This year’s top five are:
- Lose weight/improve fitness
- Eat better
- Travel more
- Improve finances, get out of debt
- Sleep more.
One of the secrets to making new year’s resolutions that count is to think about the bigger picture. What changes could you make to improve your quality of life in retirement?
1. Physical fitness
Physical activity is important. It could be a regular walk, swimming or attending age-appropriate exercise classes run by your local council or gym. Exercise can improve your health and reduce the risk of developing several diseases, including type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
The Victorian government, website betterhealth.vic.gov, states that physical activity and exercise can have immediate and long-term health benefits and, ultimately, improve your quality of life. A minimum of 30 minutes’ activity each day can help you to:
- reduce your risk of heart attack
- better manage your weight
- lower your blood pressure and cholesterol level
- reduce the risk of falls
- recover better from periods of hospitalisation or bed rest
- have more energy and a better mood, feel more relaxed and sleep better.
2. Mental fitness
Beyond Blue says around 10 to 15 per cent of older Australians experience depression and 10 per cent experience anxiety. According to Queensland Health, finding purpose, looking after your physical health, making connections, feeling safe and accessing support are key elements to look after your mental wellbeing.
3. Financial fitness
Financial health is closely linked to mental health; a sound financial position can bring security and peace of mind. It can enable you to afford and enjoy your leisure time and have a positive effect on your wellbeing.
If you haven’t already, the new year is the ideal time to set up a budget. As a starting point, ASIC’s Track My Spend app is a great way to monitor your spending. It provides a quick snapshot of your regular fixed expenses as well as discretionary spending.
If you hoped that 2020 would be the year you remodelled your kitchen or renovated your bathroom but can’t make it work with your budget, have you considered using some of the savings in your home?
Using your home equity to complement super and the Age Pension can help you achieve a more comfortable lifestyle and enjoy greater wellbeing. It can provide a lump sum for home renovations, a new car or simply ‘just in case’.
If you’d sleep easier knowing you had a ‘rainy day’ fund to fall back on, try this calculator to see how a Household Transfer® could improve your retirement funding and help you to Live Well At Home.
This article was written on behalf of Household Capital.
Applications for credit are subject to eligibility and lending criteria. Fees and charges are payable and terms and conditions apply (available on request). Household Capital Pty Limited is a credit representative (512757) of Mortgage Direct Pty Limited ACN 075 721 434, Australian Credit Licence 391876.