A question that frequently comes up is what books we would recommend people read to help prepare themselves for a successful VL (Victory Lap). I think this happens because many of our talks are held at libraries and people there are accustomed to doing their own research. There are a lot of good books out there, including Victory Lap Retirement, but the following four will do the job getting you both mentally and financially prepared to launch your own VL.
1) How To Retire Happy, Wild, and Free, by Ernie Zelinski.
This is the book that helped convince me it was ok to leave my stressful banking job. If you are in a similar position, you know it is hard to leave a well-paying job late in your career. However it is just as hard staying in a job that makes you miserable just to save some extra money for a retirement that you have no idea what it will look like. When you are in a job you hate, something has to give and I hope it’s not your health. If you lose your health, does it really matter how much money you have? You might want to think about that one a little before it’s too late.
We give out a copy of Ernie’s book at our presentations, as there is usually at least one person in attendance who is willing to admit they are struggling with the “should I stay or should I go?” decision.
Having been there myself I feel for them and know Ernie’s book will help them, just like it helped me.
2) The Essential Retirement Guide, by Frederick Vettese
I like to sleep at night and after reading this book I was able to sleep a lot better. Most of us are stressed out about the possibility of running out of money in retirement. I can’t speak for any of you but I worried about money, making the mortgage payment, getting the kids through school for most of my life and I’ll be damned if I’m going to waste any more of my life worrying about money during my Victory Lap. Life is too short for that and I have better things to do with my time.