Hi. I’m Susan. a 55 year old woman working full time and doing my best to get by. Earlier this year, on my 55st birthday I realised that the nice young man who’d sold me a pension thirty years ago had exaggerated when he said I’d be retired at 55. That pension is worth £334 per year. Before tax! Not what I’d expected. My State Pension won’t kick in until I’m 67 and I don’t think my knees will take the strain that long!

6 months later I’d got over the panic and started looking at options, real options, for retiring before the State thinks I should. In my case I’m aiming for 60.

I also realised that while we may or may not plan to retire early, we don’t always plan for what happens after. That is, what will we do with the time and how are we going to live on what is likely to be a small proportion of what we’re living on now?

So I’m looking at options. How to save money before I really, really need to. How to save effort, before the knees do give out. And to move into the next part of life without panicking too much about it.

If you’re facing a big change in your life, be it retirement, redundancy, or whatever else it may be then please know that you’re not alone.  And my hope is that I can help you through it too.