Five Essential Questions to Ask

Retirement is the time where we should be able to kick back, relax, and enjoy being free of responsibility. While we’re relieved from the heavy demands of being in the workforce, in retirement, we’re in charge of our own lives and futures. There’s no one telling us what to do or how to carry out our daily lives.

The ability to enjoy a happy and comfortable retirement depends on how well you prepared ahead of time. As you’re preparing for those days ahead, here are some questions you should ask yourself:

  1. What’s my ultimate goal in retirement? Many people dream of traveling the world, while others are content spending their days simply in the comfort of their own home. This is an important question that plays a role in how you map out your retirement. No matter how big or small your goals are, there are many factors to consider such as costs versus income.
  2. Do I have a good estimate of my retirement income? Calculate how much savings you have in your 401(k), pension, Social Security benefits, and any other investments. By getting a good snapshot of your assets, you’ll be able to determine how much of your dream is achievable.
  3. Have I estimated how much money I’ll need to cover daily expenses? Consider your “income floor,” the minimum income you’ll need to cover essential expenses such as food, housing, and healthcare. By itemizing and totaling up the monthly costs of each expense, you’ll have a better idea of how much you’ll need when weighing it against your estimated retirement income. If there’s an “income gap,” then you may want to consider investing a portion of your assets into an annuity for an additional income stream that’ll last as long as you do.
  4. Do I have a plan for healthcare costs? Rising costs of healthcare is a reality, and no one wants a long, unhealthy life. Taking an account of the healthcare expenses you may face is vital to any retirement plan. Have strategies in place to make sure you have enough coverage for your medical needs. Please note that Medicare will cover only 50-60% of your healthcare needs and doesn’t cover a majority of long-term care costs.1 So, to ensure you have proper coverage for these costs, you’ll want to look into long-term care insurance.
  5. Have I made an estate plan? To ensure that your assets are properly transferred to your loved ones, it’s critical that you start estate planning sooner than later if you haven’t already. By having one in place, you can minimize estate taxes and more importantly, give yourself and your family a peace of mind that everything is taken care of.

Retirement should be exciting and a fulfilling period of your life, provided you prepared for it. It can be overwhelming to consider all of the different factors but you’re not alone. Contact us at (651) 414-0016. Our passion lies in helping out our clients achieve the retirement lifestyle that they dream of.


Creamy Cajun Chicken Pasta

Creamy Cajun chicken pasta makes for an easy weeknight family meal. It’s simple yet creamy, cheesy, loaded with flavor, and can be served in 30 minutes!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 4 ounces linguine pasta
  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, sliced into thin strips
  • 2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 4 fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 green onion, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon lemon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese


  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add linguini pasta, and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, or until al dente; drain.
  2. Meanwhile, place chicken and Cajun seasoning in a bowl, and toss to coat.
  3. In a large skillet over medium heat, sauté chicken in butter until no longer pink and juices run clear, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add green and red bell peppers, sliced mushrooms and green onions; cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Reduce heat and stir in heavy cream. Season the sauce with basil, lemon pepper, salt, garlic powder and ground black pepper, and heat through.
  4. In a large bowl, toss linguini with sauce. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese.

Recipe adapted from AllRecipes2

Control Your Breathing

Just like any other sport, golf is no different when it comes to stress and anxiety. When under pressure, our body will “fight or flight” causing a more rapid heartbeat, a rise in blood pressure, and a racing mind. All of these will make you lose focus and throw you off your game. To relax yourself, set aside five to ten minutes to do simple breathing exercises such as this one:

  1. Lie or sit in a comfortable position and place your left hand on your chest and your right hand on your abdomen.
  2. Inhale slowly and deeply into your abdomen, gently pushing your right hand up only as much as feels comfortable. Your left hand on your chest should move only a little and only with your abdomen.
  3. At the top of your breath, pause slightly and hold for a moment.
  4. Slowly exhale allowing your right hand and abdomen to gently return to the original level.
  5. Continue your gentle deep breaths, slowly inhaling and exhaling. Let yourself enjoy the soft rhythm of movement as the air gently flows in and out of your lungs.
  6. When ready, gently stretch, rise and resume your day.

Tips adapted from Practical Golf3

Top Summer Reads

Whether you’re planning a break at the pool or just want to unwind with a good read on your back porch, we’ve got you covered. Click here for a list of fiction and nonfiction books, ranging from crime to romance, to help you through the rest of summer.

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