Some people are thrilled to hang it up after a long career, but many people derive a great deal of satisfaction and identity from their careers.
Even if you're more than ready to tell your workplace goodbye, actually transitioning to not working can be stressful. Not only do people need to get used to their new retired identity, but they also have a bunch of really complicated financial decisions to make.
Blindly following a rule of thumb can backfire in retirement. For instance, it's commonly said that retirees will need about 80 percent of pre-retirement income, but that's not always true.
A 2013 survey by Merrill Lynch and Age Wave found that 48% of respondents age 50+ identified their relationship as more fulfilling after retirement, while 45 percent said it was more loving.
With fewer expenses and a stockpile of savings, retirees are often called upon to help their family members. Those who have children and parents who are still living can be squeezed from both ends.