As retirees, you and your partner may agree on the key financial issues facing you at this stage of your life, such as your retirement spending and your estate planning considerations and arrangements. But what if your visions of retirement differ?

It can be a challenge. After all, each of you has so many possibilities: You can pursue your hobbies, volunteer, continue your education – there’s really no limit to the ways you can add meaning to your lives.

Communication is key

You probably know the importance of communication in any relationship – and this same skill is essential for agreeing on your shared retirement lifestyle.

So, to get on the same page, take the time to have an open discussion, following these suggestions:

  • Be honest – What do you want to do during your retirement years? Don’t hold back for fear of sounding “selfish” – now is the time to get your wishes out there.
  • Be specific – You and your partner may want many of the same things, but perhaps not to the same degree. For example, maybe you both want to travel – but one wants to drive around the country, while the other wants to visit foreign shores.
  • Be prepared for more dialogue – The discussion of your shared retirement lifestyle should not be a one-time event. As the years go by, you each may have new ideas about what you’d like to do. So, revisit the conversation every so often.

Finally, be open to compromise. You and your partner have already traveled a long way together, you’ve accomplished many goals, and you have much in common – so, if you’re each willing to move a little bit in the other’s direction, you should be able to enjoy spending time together for many years to come.